What is SIDS?
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the unexplained passing, normally during sleep, of a seemingly healthy baby less than a year old. SIDS is sometimes called crib death as the babies frequently perish in their own cribs.
Brain: A Cause of SIDS
Brain abnormalities increase potentiality of SIDS. In a number of afflicted infants, the part of the cortex that controls breathing and arousal from sleep fails to function correctly.
Low Weight: A Cause of SIDS
Low birth weight is a deciding facture. Premature birth or being part of a multiple birth raises the chance a baby’s brain to reach full maturity and so he or she has less control over such automatic processes as respiration and heart rate. If your child tips the scales lightly- be wary.
Many babies who died of SIDS often suffered from respiratory ailments. Does your child have a cold which might give rise to breathing difficulties?
Is your child sleeping on the abdomen or side? Infants that rest on their tummies or sides may have more trouble breathing than those put on their backs. Be wary of soft surfaces. Lying face down on a downy comforter or a waterbed can obstruct an baby’s airway. Draping a blanket above a baby’s head also is high-risk.
At times, the circumstances of the mother affects SIDS potentialities. Was she younger than 20 during childbearth?
Does she smoke cigarettes? What about drugs and liquor?
Can doctors make risk reduction recommendations on SIDS?
Researchers have collated the triggers and circumstances surrounding babies who have died of SIDS. As a result, MDs have identified key“trends” or “characteristics” of SIDS babies. Doctors can then state that certain babies may be more likely to die of SIDS and recommend risk reduction measures to mitigate the death toll
Are there any negative effects of placing babies on their backs to sleep?
No. However, it is important to place babies on their tummies during awake and/or play time to allow them to develop other muscles.
If I do not place my baby in a crib, is she/he still at risk for SIDS?
Yes, SIDS can happen anywhere, during a period of sleep. Babies placed in cribs are actually safer than if they are placed on other surfaces, such as an adult bed, a waterbed or a couch to sleep.
Is it fine if I or other siblings sleep with my baby?
The cot is the safest place for a baby to sleep. If you are concerned about checking on your baby or just want your baby to sleep close to you, it is best to place him/her in a crib next to your bed to keep the baby safe. Sleeping with a baby on a couch or a waterbed is especially dangerous.
SIDs Deaths in US/yr
Deaths per 100k
Death by Strangulation
Death by Suffocation
Sponsors and Supporters of the SIDS Research
Abstract: Despite a major decrease in the incidence of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) since the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released its recommendation in 1992 that infants be placed for sleep in a nonprone position, this decline has plateaued in recent years. Concurrently, other causes of sudden unexpected infant death that occur during sleep (sleep-related deaths), including suffocation, asphyxia,and entrapment, and ill-defined or unspecified causes of death have increased in incidence, particularly since the AAP published its last statement on SIDS in 2005.
The following government and NGO institutions provide SIDS Aid
The American SIDS Institute conducts research and offers education and round-the-clock support to pediatricians and families. Call (800) 232-7437 or (770) 426-8746, or visit the institute’s website.
The Back to Sleep Hotline, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, offers information, support, and referrals. Call (800) 505-2742.
The CJ Foundation for SIDS is the largest nongovernmental funder of SIDS-related programs in the United States. Visit the foundation’s website for news about SIDS, a look at ongoing research, and updates on fundraisers and events around the country.