What You Need to Know: Safe Sleep for Babies
Safe sleep practices can save lives. You can do many things to keep your baby safe.
Following safe sleep guidelines can help prevent sudden unexpected infant death (SUID) and reduce other sleep-related risks and injuries. SUID is the leading cause of death once babies leave the newborn nursery.
UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital is a Cribs for Kids® Gold Certified National Safe Sleep Champion — its highest designation.
As safe sleep champions, we're proactively working to reduce the number of sleep-related infant deaths in western Pa. The region has one of the state's highest SUID rates.
Creating a Safe Sleep Space for Baby
All caregivers — parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, babysitters, and childcare providers — should know how to help babies sleep safely.
Talk about these safety steps with your family, friends, and anyone else who helps take care of your baby.
Explain in detail what you expect them to do. Do not assume that people who care for your baby know these safe sleep tips.
What Are the Tips for Safe Sleep?
They're as simple as ABCD.
Other Details You Should Know
- You may put a hat on your baby if you're outdoors in cold weather but take it off once inside.
- Your baby may not stop crying no matter what you try. If you need a break or time to calm yourself, place your baby in a safe sleep space. (Alone, on their Back, and in their Crib). Be sure to check on them every 10 to 15 minutes.
Why Is it Important to Know About SUID?
- SUID is the sudden death of an infant under 1 year of age. Every year there are about 3,500 SUID deaths in the US.
- SUID can happen to any infant, but premature or low-birth-weight babies are at higher risk.
- Be suspicious of products that claim they help prevent SUID. Talk to your doctor before buying any product that claims to reduce SUID risk.
If you can't afford a crib, bassinet, or pack and play for your baby, talk with your doctor. Or call Cribs for Kids toll-free at 1-888-721-2742 (CRIB).