Breast-Feeding, Vaccinations Lower SIDS Risk, Experts
TUESDAY, Oct. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Experts at the American
Academy of Pediatrics say breast-feeding and proper immunizations
can both lower baby's risk for sudden infant death syndrome
Those are two new recommendations issued Tuesday as part of the
AAP's updated SIDS guidelines.
Since 1992, when the AAP recommended that all babies should be
placed on their backs to sleep, SIDS has declined sharply in the
United States, according to an AAP news release. But sleep-related
deaths from other causes such as suffocation, entrapment and
accidental strangulation have increased.
The updated guidelines, slated for Oct. 18 release at the AAP's
national meeting in Boston, are published online and in the
November print issue of the journal
Pediatrics. They offer additional advice for parents to create a safe sleeping environment for their babies and include three important new recommendations:
- Breast-feeding is associated with a reduced risk of SIDS and is
- Infants should be immunized. Research suggests immunization
reduces the risk of SIDS by 50 percent.
- Bumper pads shouldn't be used in cribs. The pads don't prevent
injuries but can cause suffocation, strangulation or
Among the other recommendations for parents:
- Place your baby on his or her back for every sleep time.
- Always place your baby on a firm sleep surface. Car seats and
other sitting devices are not recommended for routine sleep.
- Your baby should sleep in the same room as you, but not in the
- Cribs should not have any soft objects or loose bedding. This
includes pillows, blankets and bumper pads.
- Do not use wedges and positioners.
- Pregnant woman should receive regular prenatal care. Don't
smoke during pregnancy or after birth.
- Offer your baby a pacifier at nap time and bedtime.
- Don't cover your baby's head, and avoid overheating.
- Don't use home monitors or commercial devices marketed to
reduce the risk of SIDS.
- Your baby should receive all recommended vaccinations.
- Be sure to give your baby supervised, awake tummy time each
day. This will help development and reduce the risk of flat head
The Nemours Foundation has more about
sleep and newborns.
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