This week is Safer Sleep Week (11-17 March 2019) launched by The Lullaby Trust.
Safer Sleep Week aims to raise awareness of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and to promote evidence-based advice on how parents can reduce the risks.
This year The Lullaby Trust published a report of over 8,500 participants which showed that 76% have co-slept with their baby at some point, with 40% admitting to doing so in hazardous circumstances such as sleeping with their baby on the sofa, under the influence of alcohol or as a smoker.
Co-sleeping on the sofa or armchair was the most prevalent risk with 40% of parents saying they had done so, and 25% have said they have done it more than once.
According to research, an adult falling asleep on the sofa or armchair with a baby increases the risk of SIDS by up to 50 times.
The latest figures show 133 babies die each year in co-sleeping situations.
Acting CEO of The Lullaby Trust, Jenny Ward, told the Telegraph: Co-sleeping needs to be discussed with all families. We know from talking to parents that if they are told not to co-sleep they will then feel they cannot discuss what actually happens.
“As a result they will not get the important advice on how to co-sleep more safely. It is reality that even if parents do not plan to co-sleep, many still fall asleep with their babies unintentionally.”
The Lullaby Trust, Public Health England, Unicef UK Baby Friendly Initiative and BASIS (Baby Sleep Info Source, Durham University) have launched a range of resources for parents and midwives.
The resources provide information and guidance on safer sleep that midwives can use to support parents in reducing the risk of SIDS.
The resources can be found on the Unicef website here.
MIDIRS is proud to support Safer Sleep Week 11-17 March 2019.
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