Sunday, October 30, 2011

10/30 Sudden Infant Death Awareness (SIDS) Month



By Diane Forrest, RN

When my son was born my mother came to stay and help out.  I had a C-Section because the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck, so she was letting me rest while she took care of him.  Our first day home from the hospital my mother anxiously watched as he slept.  After 3 hours she could no longer stand it and woke him up.  I guess she was afraid he was sleeping too long, or she just wanted to hold him.  It took 18 months for him to sleep during the night.  Of course that time I was the one to check to make sure he was ok.


The threat of sudden infant death is terrifying.  It is the leading cause of death in children between one month and one year of age. Most SIDS deaths happen when babies are between 2 months and 4 months of age.


The following have been linked to a baby's increased risk of SIDS:
  • Sleeping on the stomach;
  • Being around cigarette smoke while in the womb or after being born;
  • Sleeping in the same bed as their parents (co-sleeping);
  • Soft bedding in the crib;
  • Multiple birth babies (being a twin, triplet, etc.);
  • Premature birth;
  • Having a brother or sister who had SIDS;
  • Mothers who smoke or use illegal drugs;
  • Being born to a teen mother;
  • Short time period between pregnancies;
  • Late or no prenatal care; and
  • Living in poverty situations.


Prevention:

  • There are some precautions that you can take to help prevent SIDS;
  • Always place baby on the back to sleep;
  • Refrain from putting the baby in the bed with other persons;
  • Avoid soft bedding material;
  • Allow baby's bed in the same room as parents;
  • Don't keep room too hot;
  • Offer pacifier while sleeping; and
  • Keep soft toys out of bed.


This is Sudden Infant Death Awareness month, so if you are someone you know is expecting, or has a newborn; please share these tips to prevent an unnecessary tragedy.


For more information click here: http://sids.org/index.htm

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