Moms knowingly take risks with baby sleep safety
American Baby and Safe Kids Worldwide have announced the exclusive results from their new survey exposing the risks moms knowingly take in baby sleep safety. The findings from the survey, which polled 4,547 mothers with babies age one and under, are featured in a special report titled, “How Safe Is Your Sleeping Baby?” in the March 2014 issue of American Baby and online at www.americanbaby.com/safer-sleep.
Virtually all moms (96 percent) say they know the rules for safe baby slumber, which include putting baby to sleep alone, on his back, in a crib. However, only 66 percent follow this advice. Common sleep risks <http://www.parents.com/blogs/parents-perspective/2014/02/20/babies/are-you-making-these-baby-sleep-safety-mistakes/> include allowing baby to sleep on his stomach, placing at least one item inside baby’s crib, and bed sharing.
Twenty-eight percent of moms with babies under age one put their baby to sleep on his or her stomach, a practice that leaves babies at increased risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Of those, 47 percent do it before their baby turns three months old despite the fact that the risk of SIDS is highest in the first four months.
Seventy-three percent of moms report they’ve placed at least one item inside the crib with their babies. A blanket was most common (59 percent), followed by bumpers (35 percent), stuffed animals (23 percent) and pillows (8 percent). All are suffocation hazards and can increase the risk of SIDS five-fold for babies under age one.
The high number of moms who say they sleep with their baby surprised experts. Sixty-five percent of moms polled reported they’ve slept in bed with their infant; 38 percent do so regularly. And, 53 percent have slept on a couch with their infant. Studies show that about half of all suffocation deaths among infants happen in an adult bed.
“We were impressed by how widely informed moms are about baby sleep safety, but disturbed by how many disregard the recommendations,” said Dana Points, Editor-in-Chief of American Baby. “There are proven steps to take to avoid sleep-related infant deaths such as a putting your baby to sleep in a bare crib to reduce the risk of SIDS. Notably, 30 percent of moms nearly always put their baby to sleep with a pacifier, which can reduce the risk of SIDS by 90 percent.”
"Those first months with a newborn can be exhausting," said Kate Carr, President and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide. "Rather than risk falling asleep with baby in your bed, create a safe sleeping spot next to your bed. Room sharing, not bed sharing, keeps them close and safe."
The American Baby Sleep Survey was conducted online September 24 – October 7, 2013 among 4,547 U.S. mothers with children under one year of age. The objectives of the study focused on attitudes and practices regarding babies and sleep safety.
American Baby, along with Parents, FamilyFun and Ser Padres, makes up The Meredith Parents Network portfolio of parenthood brands. American Baby celebrates the thrill-of-a-lifetime experience of pregnancy and new motherhood while helping readers approach the first important years of their baby’s life with confidence. The magazine’s groundbreaking “Just For You” section allows moms-to-be and new moms to receive a copy customized to precisely where they are in their stage of pregnancy or parenthood. The brand surrounds young moms with easy how-to’s and friendly support and allows them to connect mom-to-mom via americanbaby.com, as well as through its social media to share real-world lessons and inspiring stories.
About Safe Kids Worldwide
Safe Kids Worldwide is a global network of organizations dedicated to providing parents and caregivers with practical and proven resources to protect kids from unintentional injuries, the number one cause of death to children in the United States. Throughout the world, almost one million children die of an injury each year, and every one of these tragedies is preventable. Safe Kids works with an extensive network of more than 600 coalitions in the U.S. and in 23 countries to reduce traffic injuries, drownings, falls, burns, poisonings and more. Since 1988, Safe Kids has helped reduce the U.S. childhood death rate from unintentional injury by 53 percent. Working together, we can do much more for kids everywhere. Join our effort at safekids.org <safekids.org> .