Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Prevention


SIDS is a name we give to some infant deaths. These are deaths that are unexpected. They are deaths for which we can't find a cause, even after careful study. Although we don't fully understand SIDS, you can do things to help prevent it.

Safe Sleep

Your baby should sleep in an approved crib. Keep the crib in your bedroom for at least the first six months. Use a firm mattress and a fitted sheet. Don't put anything else in the crib. Instead of a blanket, it's better to use sleep clothes that cover your baby. Keep the room at a temperature that's comfortable for you. A sleeping baby shouldn't feel hot or sweaty. Always put your baby on his or her back to sleep. Do this at night and for naps. And don't rely on monitors or other devices that claim to reduce SIDS. These haven't proven to be effective.

Other Tips

Breast-feed your baby for at least six months if you can. That helps lower SIDS risk. A pacifier during sleep does, too. You can offer one before naps and at night. If your baby spits it out or if it falls out during sleep, don't put it back in. Put your baby on his or her stomach during the day when your baby is awake. This helps build strong neck muscles. And, you can lower your baby's SIDS risk by making sure your baby is current on all recommended vaccines.


Finally, don't let anyone smoke near your baby. Be sure to share these tips with anyone who helps care for your child.