Sudden infant death syndrome is a term that describes an unexpected or sudden death of an infant under one year old.
Usually the effect of SIDS is higher in those infants who are between 2 and 4 months old.
The factors of sudden infant death syndrome are higher in winter months.
Most SIDS deaths occur while an infant is sleeping with face down. SIDS can also occur in normal healthy infants. Care should be taken to prevent the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.
Precautions to be taken by new parents to reduce sudden infant death syndrome:
Put your baby to sleep on his or her back to reduce the affects of sudden infant death syndrome. Side sleeping is no longer considered to be safe.
If you put to sleep your babies on their sides, they should be positioned with one arm forward to keep them from rolling over on their stomach. Soft foam wedges can be very useful to position your baby while sleeping.
Avoid smooth, loose, and fluffy surfaces. This includes pillows, soft mattresses, waterbeds, quilts, sheepskin, beanbags, or other forms of soft bedding. Your baby should sleep on a firm flat mattress or other firm surface.
Do not put stuffed toys and extra pillows in your babyâ€™s crib. These objects can cover your babyâ€™s mouth or nose, causing difficulty in breathing. Children under the age of 2 should sleep in cribs.
Clothing and head covering while your baby sleeping:
Avoid over-wrapping and dressing of your baby in too many layers. Dress your baby lightly while sleeping. Blankets or other coverings can cover your babyâ€™s mouth and nose causing suffocation and hence it increases the factors of sudden infant death syndrome.
Place the blanket from your babyâ€™s feet and up to the middle of chest. Insert the blanket around the crib mattress, so that your baby can sleep comfortably.
Your baby should be kept warm, but not too warm. Put your babyâ€™s room temperature that is comfortable to for an adult. Instead of blankets it is better to use a sleeper or other sleep clothing to keep your baby warm.
If you are breastfeeding, your baby is at lower risk from attacking of sudden infant death syndrome. Breastfeeding can helps to protect your baby from infections.
Offer a pacifier:
Sucking a pacifier at naptime or bedtime reduces the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.
Early prenatal care helps to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. This care involves taking nutritious food, proteins, fruits, and fresh vegetables and not drinking alcohol.
Smoke free zone:
Establish a smoke free zone in your babyâ€™s room. Do not allow any person to smoke around the baby.
Donâ€™t allow your baby to share a bed with siblings or with you. You can keep your baby in your room but only in your babyâ€™s crib.
Monitoring systems to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome:
There are some kinds of monitoring systems that can help if your baby stops breathing. The situations in which you have to consider these systems are:
- If your baby has had any life-threatening situations, such as skin turning to blue, or arising a situation of mouth-to-mouth recovery
- If the baby has older siblings who died of sudden infant death syndrome
- In the case of premature birth of a baby
Make sure that your baby lungs are fully developed and maintain all vaccinations to reduce any infection.