The Washington Post

Understanding infant sleep guidelines and SIDS: Live Q&A at 11 a.m.

From elsewhere in The Post: Almost 20 years ago, the U.S. government launched the “Back to Sleep” campaign to encourage parents to put their babies to sleep on their backs for their first year of life. The American Academy of Pediatrics had recommended this way of sleeping to decrease the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.

But many parents still allow their babies to sleep on their sides or stomachs, though research shows a more than 50 percent drop in SIDS cases in the U.S. since the campaign started.

“...25 percent of U.S. babies sleep on their stomachs or sides, according to a national infant sleep position study. (In 1992, before the “Back to Sleep” campaign, that proportion was roughly 85 percent, according to the study.),” writes Rachel Saslow in a story about SIDS.

“...many parents find that infants sleep better and longer on their stomachs. New babies startle easily while on their backs and can wake themselves up frequently. Swaddling them can help prevent this, but wrapping a crying baby like a burrito isn’t always easy for a sleep-deprived parent in the middle of the night.”

Saslow will be online today at 11 a.m. to discuss sleep-related deaths in babies and what experts recommend to lower the risk. Submit questions now.


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