Parents placing their child in a safe sleep environment, in which the risks of sudden infant death syndrome and other sleep-related causes of infant death are low. The baby is sleeping on its back on a firm sleep surface; and there are no crib bumpers, pillows, blankets, loose bedding, or toys in the sleep area.
SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, Illinois Department of Public Health, Illinois Department of Human Services and Memorial Medical Center have joined forces to kick off Safe Sleep Awareness Month in Illinois.
The prevention and education campaign is aimed at reducing one of the leading causes of death for children ages 1 and younger – accidental sleep suffocation.
“Safe Sleep is all about the ABCs: babies should always sleep alone, on their backs in a safe crib in a smoke-free environment,” DCFS Acting Director Bobbie Gregg said. “We need the public’s help to spread the word about what a safe sleep environment looks like: a crib with a firm mattress covered by a tightly fitted sheet and free of stuffed animals, toys, blankets, bumpers and all other potential hazards.”
In accordance with the American Academy of Pediatrics, follow these recommendations:
- Infants should be placed on their backs to sleep.
- Use a firm sleep surface and firm mattress covered only with a fitted sheet.
- Remove soft objects and loose bedding from the crib, including all pillows, quilts, comforters, stuffed toys, bumper pads or other soft objects.
- Don’t smoke before or after your baby is born, and don’t let others smoke around your baby.
- Avoid allowing baby to become overheated: Dress him or her lightly for sleeping, and keep the room at a temperature that is comfortable for an adult.
- Practice supervised “tummy time” while your baby is awake to build strong neck and shoulder muscles.