Creating a safe sleep environment is extremely important in the early stages of your babies’ development. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), also commonly known as cot death leads to an average of 250 deaths per year which is continuously falling. There currently is not any confirmed reason as to why babies suddenly die, however experts believe that following these simple steps can help reduce the likelihood of SIDS.
When setting up your ‘new arrivals’ nursery is it essential to consider the following:
- The Cot: This is the one piece of furniture you child will use the most, all cots within the UK have to conform to British Safety standard, make sure you purchased of have a cot with this code on it BSEN716. This makes sure the cot is deep enough, the bars are equally spaced and it does not have any cut offs or steps.
- The Mattress: make sure the mattress is firm and there are two fingers widths between the cot and the mattress. There have also been recommendations to purchase a waterproof mattress cover to ensure it is always dry and clean.
- Cot Positioning: For the first 6 months the cot should be in the same room as the parents, when the cot is moved into the child’s room, it is essential not to place the cot near any furniture that will help your toddler climb out of their cot.
- Smoking: If anyone in your household smokes this is the perfect reason to stop to protect your little one. Make your home a smoke free environment as many experts have linked smoke inhalation a contributor to SIDS.
Before you put your little one in their cot for the sleep or nap you need to make sure of the following:
- The temperature of the room should be between 16-18 degrees, this will prevent your child becoming overheated during its sleep.
- The Cot only has a mattress sheet covering the mattress; there must not be any toys or pillows.
- The bedding: Loose blankets are not recommended for babies and toddlers due to the increased risk of overheating and accidental suffocation. Baby sleeping bags are the safest way for babies to sleep. Our Slumbersac sleeping bags come in 4 different tog ratings to accommodate all room temperatures, they help your child regulate their body temperature throughout the night.
- Make sure you are using the correct size sleeping bag and baby’s head cannot slip inside the neck opening.
Putting your little one to sleep:
- Make sure your child is wearing the appropriate clothing, so they do not overheat in their sleeping bag; please see our clothing chart for recommendations.
- Place your child on their back with their feet at the foot of the cot. It is recommended not to share a bed with your child due to the risk of overheating and suffocation.
- A Dummy, research has shown that newborns that suck on dummies are less likely to suffer from SIDS as they have better cardiac control however research is ongoing in this area.