What New Mothers Need To Know About Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

Reduce The Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

Sudden infant death syndrome, also known as SIDS, is a term used to describe the sudden, unexplained death of a healthy baby when he is asleep. Although there has been a decline in SIDS in recent decades, it remains a serious concern for new parents. Information about SIDS can help you through the early parts of your child’s life, as you want your newborn to be healthy, and also want his early months to be less stressful for you.

What Is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome?

A child who appears to be healthy may not awaken after he has fallen asleep. Death can occur without warning during nap time or at night. When accidental suffocation and other causes have been ruled out, the explanation for the death is SIDS.

The largest percentage of SIDS deaths occur in babies who are between two and four months of age. This does not mean Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is limited to infants in this age group. It is recommended new mothers take precautions until babies are at least twelve months old.


Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Death By Age Chart

Your baby is at the highest risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome between the ages of 2 to 4 months

What Causes SIDS?

There are a number of infant deaths that appear similar to SIDS. In addition to accidental suffocation, babies who seem to be healthy can die during sleep time due to genetic disorders and inherited disorders that show no symptoms.

However, the only known cause of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is infection that would otherwise be classified as minor. When an infection affects a baby’s tracheobronchial area, his risk of SIDS is significantly increased. Approximately half of the infants who die from SIDS are determined to have had this type of infection.

The absence of infection does not mean your infant is safe from SIDS. The most common factor in SIDS is an upper airway obstruction. Your baby will be in danger if he cannot breathe.

What Are The Risk Factors For Sudden Infant Death Syndrome?

There are many factors associated with SIDS. While some risk factors cannot be controlled, they should alert you to the need to take special precautions when you are preparing your baby for sleep time.

One example is a family history of SIDS.

A second risk factor is a baby who was born prematurely. Premature infants are at a higher risk.

Third, your infant’s health can be an issue. If your baby has health problems, you should discuss SIDS with his pediatrician.

Fourth, boys are more susceptible to SIDS than girls. More than half of the babies affected by Sudden Infant Death Syndrome are male.

Fifth, low birth weight babies have a higher risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. This can be an issue whether or not your baby was premature.

Reducing your child’s risk begins when you are pregnant. There are some factors that can occur long before your baby is born. The healthier you are, and the healthier the environment you live in during pregnancy, the healthier your baby will be after he is born.

Prenatal health is a factor in SIDS. One of the main categories of prenatal risk factors includes substances you should not put into your body during pregnancy.

You should not expose your unborn child to illegal drugs, alcohol, or tobacco products.

Anemia is a second prenatal factor. This is only one of the many reasons you need a proper diet and regular visits to your doctor during pregnancy. A healthy diet and prenatal vitamins can reduce the risk of anemia in both you and your newborn.

A third prenatal factor is maternal age. Both older women and teenage mothers are at an increased risk of losing their infants to SIDS.

Some risks are not limited to prenatal conditions. There are also factors that can increase your baby’s risk after he is born. The two most common risk factors are your child’s sleeping habits and exposure to cigarette smoke during the earliest months of his life. Fortunately, these are factors that are within your control. You can take some steps to protect your child.

Here Is The Latest News On Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

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Infant girl's death under investigation as a homicide, Pascagoula police say

The Sun Herald - 7 hours ago
Pascagoula police are investigating the death of infant girl Thursday as a homicide, Police Chief Kenny Johnson confirmed Friday. “We are just getting the investigation started,” Johnson said....

Mother of infant charged in death

News-Register - 11 hours ago
The mother of a 7-week-old girl who died in late November of a traumatic brain injury resulting from the application of a great deal of force, according to McMinnville ...and...

Baby boxes reduce number of infants dying from SIDS in one ...

Valley News Live - 2 days ago
ELKHART COUNTY, IN (CBS) Baby box significantly reduces Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in new Indiana program. Fewer babies are dying in Elkhart County, IN from SIDS and co-sleeping since a new program...

Visiting Nurses: A House To House Infant Mortality Prevention Army

WYSO - 16 hours ago
The baby seems to be hitting a growth spurt. Over the last few months, the women have covered an alphabet soup of issues related to pregnancy and child development, including how to create a safe...

News via Google. See more news matching 'sudden infant death syndrome'

SIDS Prevention

Although SIDS cannot always be prevented, there are some steps you can take to reduce your baby’s risk.


Prevent Sudden Infant Death Syndrome By Making Your Home Smoke-Free

Making your home smoke-free will help to prevent SIDS

One step is to make your home a no-smoking environment. As you want your infant to be healthy, enforce this rule for everyone in your family as well as your guests. If there is anyone who feels he must smoke, direct him to do so outdoors. Your baby needs clean, healthy air to breathe, whether he is awake or asleep.

A second step is to begin healthy, safe sleeping habits for your baby. The point to keep in mind is your infant needs to be able to breathe freely while he is asleep. You should avoid sleeping habits and practices that could interfere with his ability to breathe.

Here are some points to keep in mind:

Point 1 Your baby should sleep alone. Do not share your bed with your infant, or have him sleep with another family member. If you have limited space in your home, your baby’s crib can be placed in your own room.

Point 2 Your baby should sleep in a crib. Even if you can only afford an inexpensive crib, it is the safest environment for an infant. Do not put your baby to sleep on a sofa or other furniture at nap time or bed time.

Point 3 Remove bumper pads, stuffed toys, pillows, and blankets from your infant’s crib. When it is time for your baby to have a nap, or go to sleep for the night, dress him in a one-piece sleeper. As these sleepers are available in a variety of materials, you can find sleepers suitable for every season and temperature. Another option is to use a baby sleeping bag. Either of these options will eliminate the need for blankets.

Point 4 Your baby should sleep on his back. There are actually two benefits to this position. While sleeping on his stomach can interfere with his breathing, sleeping on his back provides more exposure to clean, fresh air. Side sleeping is also not recommended for infants.

Point 5 Take your baby for pediatric visits as often as his pediatrician recommends. It will help your infant stay healthy, and provide the opportunity for you to discuss any concerns you may have with the pediatrician. You can have peace of mind when your pediatrician assures you that you have taken every precaution to keep your child healthy and safe.


While not every case of SIDS can be prevented, these tips can make a difference. You can lower your child’s risk, both during your pregnancy and after he is born.

The earliest months of a baby’s life can be stressful for a new mom. Knowing you have taken important steps to keep him safe and healthy can increase your confidence. Instead of experiencing sudden infant death syndrome, you can look forward to a wonderful life with your child.

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