Study Finds Cribs Leading Cause of Death in Nurseries
Experts call for safe-sleep environment for your baby
A more than 20-year study emphasizes the dangers of your baby’s nursery products and the deadly consequences of not providing a safe-sleep environment for your child.
The new study, published online and in the April issue of Pediatrics, showed that cribs/mattresses “were the second most common source of injury and were associated with the majority of nursery product-related fatalities.”
The study states that it’s likely that sudden unexpected infant death accounted for many of the fatalities recorded.
“Sleep environment hazards play a key role in infant injury, especially sudden unexpected infant death, and health care practitioners should counsel caregivers to not place bumper pads or soft objects, such as blankets or pillows, in the crib because of the risk of strangulation, entrapment, and suffocation,” reads the article. “Caregivers should only use the firm, snugly fitting mattress designed for their crib and never use supplemental mattresses, which may increase the risk of entrapment and suffocation.”
Dyann Daley, M.D., executive director of Cook Children’s new Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment, takes a closer look at this study. Click here to find a detailed report on which nursery products pose the greatest risk of injury or death for a 0-3 year old; and what parents should be cautious of by age group,
Since 2011, the American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended against bumper pad use due to the risk of injury.
The study found that nursery product-related injuries were most commonly associated with:
- Baby carriers (19.5 percent)
- Cribs/mattresses (18.6 percent)
- Strollers/carriages (16.5 percent)
- Baby walkers/jumpers exercisers (16.2 percent)
During the time span, of the 0.2 percent of injuries that resulted in death:
- 80.2 percent were younger than 1 year old
- 86.9 percent were breathing related
- 73.4 percent were associated with cribs/mattresses
Dr. Daley provides the following to protect your baby from the risk of SUID
- Babies should sleep flat on their back for every sleep time.
- Babies should have their own sleep surface with a firm mattress and tight fitting sheet.
- Room-share without bed-sharing.
- Breastfeed exclusively for 6 months.
- Offer a pacifier at every sleep time.
- Keep blankets, pillows, bumpers, stuffed animals, mobiles, monitors and other humans or animals out of a baby’s sleep environment
- Do not use infant positioners such as wedges or pillows. These items are a suffocation hazard and they make reflux worse.
- Baby should sleep in a footed onesie or sleep sack.
- Swaddling is not necessary and could be harmful. If you must swaddle, make sure you completely stop before your baby is 8 weeks old.