OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – For the first time in six years, parents are receiving updated guidelines for reducing infant sleep-related deaths.
For the first time since 2016, the American Academy of Pediatrics has updated the recommendations to offer more specific steps to reduce the risk of SIDS.
SIDS is the sudden, unexpected death of a baby younger than 1-year-old that does not have a known cause even after a complete investigation. SUID covers all infant sleep-related deaths, including those for which there is an identified cause.
The AAP recommends infants sleep in their parents’ room, close to the parents’ bed, but on a separate surface designed for infants, ideally for at least the first six months.
Officials say the surface needs to be firm, flat, and not inclined to reduce the risk of suffocation or entrapment.
Babies should only sleep wearing a onesie and wearable blanket without anything else in the sleep space like blankets, loose sheets, pillows, and toys.
“New parents are getting information from grandparents, social media, and their doctor,” said James Craig, the OSDH Infant Safe Sleep Coordinator. “We want to make sure they have the most accurate and up-to-date information. Using the ABCs acronym is an easy way to remember the basics. Babies should sleep Alone, on their Backs, in an appropriate Crib, and in a tobacco/vape free home. Following these simple guidelines will help reduce the risk of SIDS-related deaths.”
The AAP has also deemed weighted products like sleep sacks, swaddles, sleepers, and blankets integrated with weights unsafe to use.
The organization also doesn’t recommend cardiorespiratory monitors to track a baby’s breathing due to limited evaluation for safety, accuracy, or efficacy.
“The AAP also mentions concerns those type of monitors could falsely reassure parents that an ailing baby is healthy, or alarm parents that a healthy baby is sick,” said Craig.
For more information, visit the OSDH website.