Keep Your Baby Safe While Sleeping

I’ve been reading a bunch of articles lately that have to do with infants dying in their sleep.  It’s an awful thing to read, I know.  One of the main reasons why is because they were not put safely down in their own beds.  I’ve also read articles that state Pediatricians are not doing a great job of expressing how important it is to have babies lie down on their backs to sleep which is really a shame.  Education is the key to reducing the number of accidental deaths during sleep.

I’m putting this article together to help bring this issue to light and make parents aware of the importance of giving babies a safe place to sleep.  It is not meant to scare you, just to inform you.


Nursing Pillows

In an ABC News report, it states that 3 infant deaths in Harrisburg, PA were due to babies sleeping on nursing pillows.  It explains that the Boppy Pillow company (the most well known nursing pillow company) has several warnings on their website along with a warning tag attached to the pillow itself explaining that babies should not be left to fall asleep on it.  Please… read safety labels.  This one is very important.


Infant Co Sleeping

Another news report, 10 News WTSP reports that 17 children died in 2014 in Hillsborough County, FL due to unsafe sleeping.  4 of those were due to the baby co-sleeping with their parents.

KENS5 News reports that according to Texas statistics, 69 babies from Jan – March of 2015 died from co-sleeping.  In 2014 the total number was 197 and in 2013 the total number of children who passed away because of this was 169!  Those deaths may have been prevented if the parents truly understood the risks they were taking.


Pillows and Blankets in the Crib

The Clarion-Ledger reports that between June 29, 2015 and July 23, 2015, 7 children in Mississippi died from suffocation while sleeping in an unsafe environment.  Co-sleeping was mentioned as well as cribs having too many pillows and blankets.


These stores are hard to read, but this is a real problem happening all across the US.  The saddest part is that most of them were preventable.  My heart breaks when I think about the loss of a child along with the impact that it has on the family and friends.  I know what it’s like to be sleep deprived and trying desperately to get a baby to sleep, but please also think about what’s best for them.

I have a separate article dedicated to Keeping Your Baby Cozy and Safe.  You can also link from there to safe room-sharing options.  If you have an infant, please take the time to read these posts.  I thank you in advance.

16 comments on “Keep Your Baby Safe While Sleeping

  1. Jyl

    It’s a horrific thing to have to consider, and even worse when it actually happens, so I’m sure any advice that can be given to any parent on the subject needs to be put out there.
    I’ve heard that Sudden Infant Death Syndrome can also be brought on by the baby being too warm – it believes that it’s back in the womb and doesn’t need to breath, so it just stops… Have you heard of this theory? What do you think of this?

    • Kristy

      Thanks for the comment Jyl, and yes you bring up a good point. You don’t want to make your baby too warm because that could increase their risk of SIDS. It’s best to dress them in the same amount of layers as you are, with possibly one extra light layer like a swaddle. You want to make sure their crib is not directly in front of the heater for the room as well.

  2. Ron Pettengill

    Very interesting article. This is a tragic subject. And unfortunately, one which occurs too often. As a father of 6 and 5 grandkids, It breaks my heart when I hear of parents losing their infants. I sure hope this will help new parents. One question I have is does the new technology of baby monitors help in prevention?

    • Kristy

      Hi Ron, I know it’s a heart breaking subject. There are baby movement monitors that can be purchased. They go either underneath the baby or clips to the diaper and monitors their breathing. I actually have a review on the best baby movement monitors in my opinion. You can check it out here:

  3. Sammi -

    What a great article! Very truthful and real statistics are a real eye opener when it comes to infant deaths. Unfortunately at the time, sleepless night after sleepless night judgement calls aren’t what they should be so bad calls can be made, even falling asleep without meaning to can happen. I have to say, my baby never slept for more than 2 hours on his back. When he could move he wriggled and managed to sleep on his front until I caught him and moved him – in the end I ended up attempting to sleep sat up with him on me, on his front – we didn’t get much sleep but we got more than we would if he slept in his crib. When I felt he was able to move freely to breathe I left him and he was so much happier… Unfortunately, not all babies are made the same – as adults aren’t – we can’t force them but we can try to make the environment around them as safe as possible. Sammi

    • Kristy

      I feel your pain Sammi. When sleep deprived, we definitely don’t think straight. If we as parents are informed of the risks though, hopefully good judgement calls can be made. Based on my research, babies have the highest risk of SIDS from 2 – 4 months old so that’s when it’s best to be extra careful. Once they are able to move around and actually flip themselves onto their belly they are typically a little older, more developed, and the risk is reduced. Thanks for sharing your story.

  4. BobGatto

    This post does give me information, but only in the way of reminders. It reads more like a news cast than a post or page. It’s good to mention what reports say once in a while, but don’t keep doing it over and over. That’s where I think it went wrong. If you want to explain about the reports do it in you own words and don’t start the sentence with “The Whatever Report said…” or “Whatever reports…”

    • Kristy

      Thanks for the constructive criticism Bob. The reason I referenced so many news stories is because I wanted to share them with people. I’ve been seeing them a lot in the news lately and the full article (when clicked) can give more insight about each one. I just want to help spread the word and put reminders into parents heads to think about safety while putting their babies down to sleep.

  5. Sarah

    I just had my third baby and have been working through the night time sleeping. Sometimes it’s super hard to not fall asleep while nursing them, and waking up hours later realizing that he’s still beside me and I hadn’t put him back in his cradle. I DO purposely want to have him sleeping in his cradle next to me because I understand ome of the dangers with co-sleeping But there are many advantages too, such as they sleep better and longer when they’re more comfortable and close with their parents. But what would you recommend someone to help them not fall asleep as easily with the baby still in bed with them?

    • Kristy

      Hi Sarah,

      Thanks for your comment and your honesty. I can only imagine how tired you are with caring for a new baby and yet taking care of 2 other children. I understand the comfort and closeness that co-sleeping brings, the risks are just scary. I’d rather do more snuggling during the day when I’m wide awake.

      I have an article Breastfeeding at Night – Looking for an easier way? that you can check out. In it I suggest a vibrating nursing night light alarm that you can clip to yourself. That would ensure that if you do fall asleep that you’re awoken in a few minutes rather than a few hours. Other things you could try to stay awake: sing nursery rhymes or songs, drink water and nibble on a healthy snack, chew gum, or surf the web/play games on a cell phone or tablet.

  6. Oral

    Hi Kristy, it is really heart-rending to hear about the death of any child, especially when it could be prevented. What is sad is that many of us do not read the labels of products we use for our children (or ourselves). If we do take the time out to do this we can save ourselves a lot of heartaches and pain.

    Thanks for the post and hope others will find it helpful.

    • Kristy

      Hi Oral. Thanks for the comment and you’re right. Many of us are so busy with life that we don’t read labels for products that we use or consume. We kind of just get in the habit of winging it and most of the time we go unaffected. Awareness is the key. Please share this with your friends and family.

  7. Chris

    Could not imagine something like this happening to me! Defiantly glad I have stumbled upon this to help remind me the dangers of what I am doing every day. Currently have a year old who sleeps with us nearly every night and have another on the way who I need to make sure does not end up the same way! Thank you for this!

    • Kristy

      Thanks for taking the time to read this article Chris. It’s not to say that it will happen, but it could. Your babies would be so much safer in their own sleeping space. Have you considered a co-sleeper which attaches to the bed? I think it’s a great idea because it keeps your baby safe, yet close to you. Click here to check out my review for one.

  8. Owain

    As I am an expecting father in a few months I found this post quite useful. So thank you very much. It is quite sad to hear about these deaths.

    Also, particularly sad that these deaths can be prevented. I wish people would just read instructions. It would save so much heartache.

    It’s a nice thought to sleep with your baby, but baby’s do belong in their own beds where they are safer.

    I hope many people read this post and know the dangers that do come with night time if they do not do things properly.

    • Kristy

      I’m so glad you found my post and are now aware of the dangers. It is extremely sad that these deaths can be prevented. Completly heartbreaking. If you want to sleep with your baby, the co-sleeper that attaches to your bed is the perfect choice. Close, yet safe!

      Thanks for reading the article and taking the time to post. Please help me spread this important message to all your friends who become new parents. 🙂

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