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Safe Sleep For Infants

The Scioto County Health Department wants to help you keep your baby safe! Sadly, many babies are at risk of injury or death due to unsafe sleep environments. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 3500 babies die in the U.S. each year due to unsafe sleep environments. An easy way to remember the recommendations for safe sleep for infants is to KNOW YOUR ABCD’s!

  • A = Alone (The baby should sleep alone. Co-sleeping is NOT safe!)
  • B = Back (Place the baby on his/her back, NOT on the side or belly)
  • C = Crib (The baby should sleep in a safety-approved crib or bassinette. Do NOT place pillows, blankets, or crib bumpers in the crib, as these can suffocate the baby.)
  • D = Don’t Smoke! (Smoking during pregnancy, and exposure to second-hand smoke after the baby is born, increases the chance of sleep-related infant deaths.)

Infant Safe Sleep Tips

Follow these tips and explore the rest of  and Baby 1st Network  to learn why of the ABCs of infant safe sleep are safest for baby:

  • The safest place for your baby to sleep is in the room where you sleep, but not in your bed.
  • Never place babies to sleep on adult beds, chairs, sofas, waterbeds, pillows, cushions or soft surfaces.
  • Dress your baby in sleep clothing, such as a sleep sack, and do not use a blanket.
  • Avoid letting the baby get too hot. Keep room temperatures in a range comfortable for a lightly clothed adult.
  • Infants should receive all recommended vaccinations.
  • Breastfeeding is recommended to help to reduce the risk of sleep-related death.
  • Avoid smoke exposure during pregnancy and after birth. Place the crib in an area that is always smoke free.
  • Supervised, awake tummy time is recommended daily to facilitate development.
  • Consider using a pacifier at nap time and bed time, once breastfeeding is well established.
  • Talk to those who care for your baby, including child care providers, family, and friends, about placing your baby to sleep on his back for every sleep.
  • Obtain regular prenatal care to reduce the risk of sleep-related death even before birth.
  • Avoid alcohol and illicit drug use during pregnancy and after birth.

If you would like to talk with a nurse about safe sleep for your baby, please call the Scioto County Health Department at 740-355-8358. We will be happy to help you!

Resources for Safe Infant Sleep