- Learn about the Missouri Safe Sleep Coalition
A large majority of sudden infant deaths diagnosed as SIDS are due to unsafe sleeping arrangements. These unsafe arrangements include any sleep surface not designed for infants, sleeping with head or face covered, and sharing a sleep surface.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), recommends the following to reduce the risk of suffocation and other sleep related death or injury:
- Up to age one, always place your baby on his or her back to sleep alone for night time, nap time and every time.
The back sleep position does not increase the risk of choking.
- Place your baby alone in a safety-approved crib, bassinet or portable play area with a firm sleep surface and tight-fitted sheet.
Babies should NOT sleep on an adult bed or other soft mattress, waterbed, sofa, recliner, chair, beanbag, pillow, cushion, bouncy seat, swing, other soft surface or in a car seat.
- Breastfeeding is recommended.
Your baby may be brought into bed for nursing or to comfort, but should be returned to his or her own sleep area when finished.
- Your baby should sleep in the same room where you sleep, but alone in a separate safe sleep area.
Bed sharing is dangerous. Room sharing without bed sharing allows closeness with your infant and helps with feeding, comforting and monitoring your baby.
- Remove all soft objects, toys, blankets, bumper pads and pillows from the sleep area.
This will help prevent suffocation, entrapment and strangulation.
- Avoid smoke exposure, alcohol and illicit drug use during pregnancy and after birth.
Do not smoke or allow smoking around your baby. Secondhand smoke and alcohol/drug use put babies at greater risk.
- Avoid overheating and head covering.
Dress your baby in a sleeper, onesie or sleep sack instead of using a blanket.
Share this important information with everyone who cares for your baby.
Good to Know
My mother shared a bed with me when I was a baby. Why should I do things differently?
Much has been learned about infant safe sleep in recent years. Many past sleep-related deaths were thought to be caused by SIDS, a natural cause of death. We now know that many babies died from accidental suffocation while sleeping in unsafe spaces, especially when bed sharing; most suffocation deaths are preventable.
I don’t want my baby to be cold while sleeping. How can I keep my baby warm?
In general, your baby should be dressed appropriately for the environment, with no greater than one layer more than an adult would wear to be comfortable.
Is a car seat or baby swing a safe place for my baby to sleep?
No. Your baby can’t lie flat in a car seat or swing, so his or her head can tip forward. This can block baby’s airway and cause suffocation.
Remember the ABCs of Safe Sleep. Alone, Back, Crib for nap time, night time, every time.
Safe Sleep Videos
Order Free Safe to Sleep Literature
Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services TEL-LINK – Call 800-835-5465 if in need of a safe crib.
Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services (DHSS) Planning a Safe Place for your Baby to Sleep
Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services (DHSS) Safe Cribs Program
Missouri Department of Social Services (DSS) Keeping Kids Safe https://dss.mo.gov/cd/keeping-kids-safe/
Infant Loss Resources
Preventing Child Deaths in Missouri-The Missouri Child Fatality Review Program Annual Reports – State Technical Assistance Team (STAT)
Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Safe to Sleep https://www.nichd.nih.gov/sts/Pages/default.aspx
Safe to Sleep https://www.nichd.nih.gov/publications/pubs/Documents/Safe_Sleep_Environment_English.pdf
Baby Safety Zone https://babysafetyzone.org/hot-topics/baby-safety-month
International Association of Child Safety http://www.iafcs.org/webcomponents/articles/events.asp?id=28
SIDS and Other Sleep-Related Infant Deaths https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/138/5/e20162938
Safe Sleep Guidance https://www.aappublications.org/news/2016/10/24/SIDS102416
Helping Babies Sleep Safely https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/features/baby-safe-sleep/index.html
Infant Safe Sleep Recommendations https://firstcandle.org/infant-safe-sleep-recommendations/