Critical New Infant Sleep Guidelines Frown Heavily on Co-Sleeping

Mother and child

According to the AAP, co-sleeping is one of the leading causes of sleep-related deaths in infants

About 2,500 babies die annually from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Now the American Academy of Pediatrics is speaking out with updated information about how sleep-related fatalities can be reduced.

New recommendations state that no bumper pads should ever be used in cribs, not just “puffy” bumpers that were previously frowned upon. The AAP also suggests pacifiers be offered to infants, and women breastfeed their babies, according to the Wall Street Journal.

But what’s bound to spark some debate is the suggestion that while babies should sleep in the same room as parents so they may be monitored closely, they should not sleep in the same bed.

Co-sleeping increases the risk of suffocation, according to the AAP.

The American Academy of Pediatrics issued updated recommendations aimed at reducing all sleep-related deaths in infants.

SIDS deaths as a result of babies sleeping on their stomachs have decreased since 1992, at which time the AAP recommended babies sleep on their backs. But deaths from causes like suffocation and entrapment as a result of co-sleeping and crib bumpers have been on the rise.

Many co-sleeping advocates are passionate about the practice and argue the risk of harm to an infant is reduced by a breastfeeding, sober, non-smoking mother.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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