Putting baby to bed can be a worry for many parents. We get the baby monitor out and sit wide-eyed, glued to it to ensure our sleeping beauties are safe.
Amongst the many concerns for parents is suffocations when sleeping. Young babies are very weak, and can’t move in the same way as older children. At this age, babies are most at risk from suffocation whilst sleeping.
It doesn’t require extreme safety measures or checking in on them constantly, just a few simple tips to remember when putting your little one down for their beauty sleep…
A Space of Their Own
Babies need a good safe place to fall asleep. The best way to keep babies safe when they’re getting their 40 winks is in a cot of their own. Many parents take babies to bed with them, especially in the first few months when they seem to wake up every five minutes!
Sadly, some babies have been accidentally suffocated by their parents. It’s not common, but it can be a dangerous option when it’s not necessary. There are a range of cots available to suit all tastes. We love the Emmay Beech Cot which comes with its own mattress and also has a Space Saver version for babies in the transition from basinette to their own cot.
If however you do wish to keep baby closer to you, or they’re not settling in their cot, a Co-Sleeper is the way forward. Easily attachable to your bed, this is the best way to keep baby close, comforted and most importantly, safe.
Tiny babies aren’t strong enough to push blankets away from their faces, so it’s important to prevent them from wriggling down under the covers. Putting babies at the bottom of the cot (so their feet touch the end) can stop them squirming down. Because they can’t push bedding away from their faces, duvets or quilts should not be used with babies under 12 months – use blankets or a lightweight sleeping bag instead. Never use a pillow with a baby less than 12 months old.
Cats love a warm, soft place to curl up. Tragically this can often be next to baby, or even on top of baby in a cot. A cat net will prevent furry friends from coming in for a cuddle, keeping baby safe whilst sleeping.
Tossing and Turning
Although they can’t walk or crawl yet, many babies are very mobile! They’ll wriggle, roll and squirm around, and their small heads can get trapped in narrow places. You can keep them safe by making sure there’s a gap of no more than 4cm anywhere between their mattress and the bars of the cot.
A sleep positioner will also provide support whilst protecting from Flat Head Syndrome.
Getting baby to sleep can be challenge enough, and so worrying about them once they do drop off needn’t be something that troubles you. Consider the world from your baby’s perspective. If anything in the cot poses a challenge or potential danger, take it out. It’s always better to be safe. Knowing you have safety in mind should help you sleep more soundly too!