Ever observe a baby squirm and struggle with a blanket or pillow while sleeping? You’d understand why many infants die from unsafe sleep. Interestingly, most parents, especially young couples are unaware of their roles in providing a healthy sleep environment for their infants. And so, they ignorantly expose their infants to potentially harmful sleep routines.
To illustrate this, a recent research has found that unintentional suffocation- as a result of a blanket obstructing the airway, sleeping in an adult bed, infants being overlaid by their mothers or caregivers and so forth, amongst other factors are one of the leading causes of infant mortality.
Fortunately, these life threatening mistakes can be prevented if you avoid the following infant sleep mistakes:
Sharing same bed with your baby
We understand the bond you share with your baby and how easy it is to give attention to your baby when they share your bed with you. However, a research result shows that 47% of mothers overlaid their babies while sleeping contributing to infant death due to suffocation. Rather than share a bed with your baby, put the baby in a crib or bassinet to sleep and ensure you provide a quality infant mattress. Also, as a precautionary measure, you should keep the crib close to you; in the same room, so as to observe your baby and ensure safety. The idea is to share your room and not your bed with your baby. If you snooze off, be sure to move your baby to her crib. Read Also: Should babies share a bed with their parents?
Lying your baby on an adult bed
No matter how comfortable your mattress is for you, do not lay your infant on it to sleep. This is because sleeping in an adult bed puts the life of your baby at risk. Babies can fall off an adult bed, get suffocated in the bedding, be possibly trapped between the mattress and the wall and so forth. The truth is that a quality infant mattress is designed to suit your infant’s needs-breathability, firmness, cushioning and comfort. Also, laying your baby on your mattress will increase exposure to allergens while reducing your ability to control clutters that can suffocate your baby.
Letting your baby sleep on a sofa or cushion
It is not safe for your baby to snooze on the sofa or cushion, you only increase the risk of suffocation by doing so. Moreover, your baby can fall off the sofa. Studies have shown that sleeping on a sofa places a baby at a 49-69% increased risk for death. As stated earlier, provide a comfortable sleep surface for babies and not just what is available.
Using loose or soft beddings or objects
Experts have warned against the use of these soft beddings in baby’s crib as it is associated with sudden infant death syndrome. Ensure you keep your baby’s sleep space free from soft beddings and objects such as blankets, pillows, stuffed bears, toys, bottles, wires, bed sheets, bumper beds, comforters and others to avoid suffocation, entrapment or strangulation. Also note that these also include using a soft baby mattress. Babies are very vulnerable and so require a lot of care and attention.
Side or stomach sleeping your baby
Laying your baby on their side or stomach while sleeping is unsafe for your infant. We recommend that your baby nap or sleep on their back. Researches have shown that sleeping on the back reduces the risk of sudden infant mortality and is therefore the safest sleep position for your baby. However, you can lay your infant on their stomach or side while awake.
Recommended Reading: 5 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYNG A MATTRESS FOR YOUR BABY