As if parents don’t have enough on their plates already, the fear of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is seemingly always talked about, but still, so little is known about it. Luckily, the AAP recommendations for SIDS prevention are pretty clear. While following them all may not always be easy, AAP SIDS guidelines are backed by research and intended to help keep your baby safe. At Dreamland, we understand the importance of safety so we’ve gathered the below information to help parents and caregivers learn more about AAP recommendations for SIDS prevention.
What are the AAP guidelines for SIDS prevention?
The American Association of Pediatrics, or the AAP, is the largest collaboration of infant and children doctors in the U.S. The AAP has compiled guidelines for safe sleep throughout infanthood in an effort to combat SIDS deaths.
These guidelines apply to infants up to the age of one and provide evidence-backed advice to help you as a parent ensure that your baby sleeps safely so you can sleep soundly.
What is the AAP policy for safe sleep?
The AAP’s policy for safe sleep includes laying your baby to sleep flat on their back only. Research has shown that “back is best” when it comes to safe infant sleep and reducing the risk of SIDS. Once your baby becomes more mobile and begins to roll back to belly, you may want to gently flip them back onto their back as they sleep. We all know moving a sleeping baby at all is like a dangerous game of Operation - one wrong move and BBBZZZZ - baby’s awake. It is important, though, that your baby gets used to back-laying, so keep trying. Don’t let it keep you up all night, though. If your baby can easily flip back and forth, they are less at risk of the dangers of rebreathing and suffocation due to their ability to change positions. Similar to adults, babies often move in their sleep as they seek comfort. Wrap your baby in a Dreamland Weighted Swaddle before bed to help keep them safe, secure, and asleep longer. The gentle weight in the swaddle evenly distributes weight and creates a sense of calming for babies, thus helping them lay still and sleep.
The AAP’s policy for safe sleep also includes keeping a baby’s sleep space free of toys, stuffed animals, and blankets. This recommendation is in place in an attempt to avoid similar situations that your little one could encounter with belly sleeping, such as suffocation and rebreathing.
What is the cause of SIDS?
While suffocation and rebreathing are thought to be contributing factors to SIDS deaths in infants, the truth is there is no clear explanation as to what exactly causes SIDS. What we do know is that there are risk factors and triggering events.
Some factors that could contribute to SIDS are:
Events that may trigger SIDS:
While there is no way of knowing if your baby is at risk of SIDS, this advice can help you ensure your baby is as safe as possible while they sleep. That means that you too can catch up on some much needed sleep. We love sleep at Dreamland, hence our mission to help parents and babies get more of it.
What devices does the AAP recommend for safe sleep?
The AAP recommends the following safe sleep spaces.
AAP safe sleep spaces:
All of these sleep spaces must have a firm mattress. A firm mattress can help prevent your baby from sinking. The idea is that a plush mattress could cause sinking which could lead to suffocation and re-breathing. It is also important that your baby’s sleep space has no gaps between the mattress and the sides of the sleeping space.
AAP unsafe sleep spaces:
- Sitting devices
Sitting devices include car seats (when not driving in the car), infant swings, bouncers, or infant recliners. Anything your baby has to be buckled into - is not recommended for sleeping in.
What are other recommendations by the AAP for safe sleep*?
Besides recommendations regarding your baby’s sleep space, the AAP shares other advice promoting safe sleep.
It’s natural to be stressed or worried; it comes with the territory of being a parent. Take a breath and relax, knowing you now have the tools and knowledge to confidently practice safe sleep with your baby, drastically reducing the chances of SIDS and any sleep-related injuries. You may be wondering, “with all these rules, how is my baby supposed to even get any sleep?”
At Dreamland, we’ve got you covered. Our sleep solutions were designed in close partnership with Pediatricians, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Nurses Certified Sleep Consultants and have been reviewed by Pulmonologists. Your sleep and your baby’s safety are as important to us as it is to you. Shop our weighted sleep aid products proven to help babies fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Our products may have come about by chance, but they are backed by science with safety as a number one priority. From one tired mom to another, give yourself the gift of Dreamland.
*The AAP updated its guidelines in June 2022, and is currently not recommending weighted sleep solutions. You can read their full report here. Please note this is not a recall. Dreamland Baby is working closely with the ASTM committee to help enact standards for weighted sleepwear. Dreamland Baby is also working with a U.S.-based research university on a comprehensive sleep study and is hopeful that the AAP will reverse its 2022 recommendations on weighted sleepwear. Since 2019, Dreamland Baby has sold over 500,000 weighted sleep sacks with zero adverse events caused by our weighted sleep solutions. Safety is always our #1 priority.