As seen in the September/October 2019 issue of Advancing Care
Unsafe sleep is the No. 1 cause of preventable infant fatalities, but putting your baby down safely is as easy as “ABC” (Alone, Back, Crib), according to Jennifer Canter, MD, MPH, FAAP, Chief of Child Abuse Pediatrics at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, a member of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth) in Valhalla.
First, babies should sleep alone. One of the highest risks for infant deaths in Westchester County is co-bedding, or sleeping in the same bed as a parent, sibling or pet. “It’s also important to keep sleep areas free from blankets, toys, bumpers and stuffed animals,” says Dr. Canter. Also, place babies on their backs to sleep, not on their stomachs or sides.
Babies should also sleep in a “four-sided sleep space, a pack-and-play or a traditional crib,” with a firm mattress and a fitted sheet, adds Dr. Canter. “The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents sleep in the same room with the baby, but not the same bed.”
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Illustration by Cocoramb