Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is when babies die suddenly, without warning, while they are asleep where no cause can be found (Parenting and Child Health, n.d.). This topic is meaningful to me because I cannot stress it enough how important it is to have infants sleep on the backs and play on their tummy. At my job we are required to take training classes and I took the class on SIDS. Although the cases has decreased it is still important for parents to know the proper sleep techniques for their baby. I have a friend who lost her to SIDS. Her and her husband had put their son to bed just as they did every night. They checked on him periodically to make sure that things were alright. The last time they got up that morning to check on him, he was lifeless. He was turning blue and felt cold. They called 911. By the times the ambulance got there, it was nothing that they could do. He had died at home in his crib. The medical examiner ruled it as an unfortunate case of SIDS. SIDS is a very important topic because SIDS not only happen when a baby is sleep but occasionally when the child is awake (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, n.d.). It is pertinent that parents make sure that there is nothing in their baby’s crib that will allow them to harm themselves and that babies need to be in their own bed and not sleeping with the parents.
In South Australia in 2009, only 2 babies died from SIDS out of around 20,000 births. SIDS is no longer the most common cause of deaths of babies between 1 month and 12 months. Between 1989 and 2009, deaths from SIDS in Australia declined by 85%, 78 in 2009 (Parenting and Child Health, n.d.). In Australia in 2010. 136 babies died suddenly and unexpectedly, of those deaths, 81 were identified as SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, n.d.). From the article Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), the Australian Organization SIDS and Kids has compiled the following check list for sleeping:
- Has baby been placed on the back to sleep?
- Is baby sleeping in a safe bassinette or cot, and away from hazards?
- Does the cot meet the Australian Standard for cots?
- Is the mattress firm?
- Does the mattress fit the cot/bassinette well?
- Is the mattress clean and in good condition and flat (not titled or elevated)?
- Is baby’s face and head uncovered?
- Have any pillows, duvets, lambs wool, cot bumpers and soft toys been removed?
- If using a baby sleeping bag, does it have a fitted neck, armholes or sleeves and no hood?
- If using blankets rather than a sleeping bag, has baby been placed to sleep with feet touching the bottom of the cot/bassinette with blankets securely tucked in?
- Is baby having tummy time to play when awake and supervised?
- If you are a smoker have you stopped smoking or contacted your doctor for help?
- Remember never to sleep baby on a sofa, bean bag, waterbed or pillow.
- Are other family members aware of how to sleep baby safely?
Parenting and Child Health – Health Topics -. (n.d.). Retrieved May 13, 2015, from http://www.cyh.com/HealthTopics/HealthTopicDetails.aspx?p=114&np=305&id=1704
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). (n.d.). Retrieved May 13, 2015, from http://www.pregnancybirthbaby.org.au/sudden-infant-death-syndrome-sids