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Safe Sleep for Babies

Sleep is a really important for your baby’s growth and development. It takes a while to understand a new baby's sleep pattern and this is different for all babies. Establishing sleep patterns in the first few months will help your baby settle and self soothe.

Getting into sleep routines can be difficult when you have a new baby or are tired yourself. Sometimes the easiest options about where and how your baby falls asleep can put them at risk.

By remembering some simple guidelines, there are things you can do to keep your baby safe while they are sleeping. This will reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), also known as cot death.

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    • Your baby is best sleeping in the same room as you until they are 6 months old.
    • It is safer to have your baby sleep in their own cot in the same room as you for the first 6 months.
    • If you choose to co-sleep the risks are increased if you have been drinking alcohol, taking drugs (including prescribed medication), you smoke or your baby was born early or with a low birth weight.
    • Put your baby to sleep on their back with their feet at the bottom of the cot.
    • Don't use duvets, pillows, cot bumpers or pods/nests.
    • Tuck in blankets so they are not loose.
    • Don't prop up a bottle for your baby as they could choke.
    • Don't put toys and teddies where your baby is sleeping.
    • Keep the room between 16-20 degrees and use a thermometer to monitor temperature.

     

  • Some families choose to co-sleep with their babies. This means they share a bed with their baby during the night, not just to feed or comfort. You should not lay on a sofa or armchair to sleep with your baby.

    As well as following the Safe Sleep Tips whilst co-sleeping, The Lullaby Trust advise; 

    • Babies should sleep in a clear space.
    • Use a baby sleeping bag instead of loose bedding, such as pillows, sheets or blankets as these could cause them to overheat or block their airways.
    • Avoid letting pets or other children sleep in the bed.
    • Make sure baby won't fall out or get trapped between the mattress and a wall.

    When not to co-sleep;

    • If either you or your partner smokes.
    • If either you or your partner has drunk alcohol or taken drugs.
    • If either you or your partner has taken prescribed medication that might make you feel drowsy.
    • You are extremely tired.
    • Your baby was premature (born at 37 weeks or earlier).
    • Your baby had a low birth rate (5 1/2 pounds or less).
    • Never sleep on a sofa or armchair with your baby.

    For more information and advice *Click Here*.

     

     

  • Watch this video to find out what bedding your baby needs;

    To avoid loose bedding such as duvets and blankets, The Lullaby Trust recommend the use of baby sleeping bags. 

    Sleeping bags come in different sizes to fit the age of your baby. It is important that the sleeping bag fits well around your baby's shoulders so their head does not slip down into the bag. 

    You can choose different sleeping bags for different times of the year, to help keep baby at the right temperature. 

Who Can Help?

You can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520 631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

To speak to other Norfolk parents and carers, you can join our online community forum below.

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