Newborn babies sleep a lot--about 16 hours a day, as a matter of fact. But for new moms, sleeping can be one of the most stressful moments in your routine. Why? Because we worry constantly about suffocation and SIDS. New moms (and veteran moms alike) are notorious for waking up all hours of the night, tiptoeing to the nursery to place a finger under the little button nose, and sigh in relief when they feel hot breath.
Warning labels printed on every crib, sleeping accessory, and swing make you feel guilty and worried everytime your baby drifts to sleep. Your doctor will also tell you not to sleep with your baby, making you wonder where exactly your baby CAN sleep? Many babies refuse to sleep anywhere else, making good sleep habits difficult.
The good news is, with a few rules, you can rest easier knowing you’re following pediatric approved and researched based sleeping habits.
Thankfully, SIDS cases have dropped 60% since the 1990s. This is probably due to better parent education and research.
Here are 6 recommended safe sleeping tips for your newborn!
1. Babies Need To Sleep On Their Back
Recommended by all health experts, the safest position for a baby is to sleep on their back. The idea is that newborn babies can’t roll over or move from side to side in their sleep, which means they breathe in their own C2O if sleeping on their tummy. The research shows a drastic drop in SIDS for babies who sleep on their backs.
2. New Borns Are Safest In Your Room--But Not In Your Bed
Your instincts will tell you if something is wrong when your baby is close to you, which is why most parents opt for a bassinet beside their bed or in their room. Newborns take a few weeks to switch their sleeping patterns from day time to night time, which means you will be up with them--bassinets are just plain convenient.
However, a baby sleeping with you is at higher risk for suffocation due to you rolling over onto them, a pillow sliding over their airway, or a blanket covering their face. Unless you are fully awake and concentrating, your baby should never sleep in your bed.
3. Do Not Let A Baby Sleep On An Incline
Inclining baby accessories, like swings and car seats are not safe for long term newborn sleeping. (The exception is if you are right there actively watching them, then it can be okay for naps, but not nighttime.) Because babies can’t move well on their own, the incline can cut off their airway if they sink into an awkward position.
4. Things That Belong In Your Baby’s Crib
-No soft toys
-No thick blankets/pillows
Babies only need a firm mattress and a tight-fitting sheet. Swaddling is considered safe, but use breathable swaddle material.
5. Temperature Control
While sleep sacks and swaddles are considered safe, it’s important to not overly bundle your baby so that they become overheated. Overheating is a factor for SIDS. If you live in a hot or tropical climate, consider using thin swaddles and short-sleeved onesies to keep your baby comfortably cool.
How do you know if your baby is too warm? Feel the nape of their neck. You can also use a baby thermometer to check, as well. If you are too hot, chances are your baby is as well.
6. Keep A Fan In Her Room
This can help keep the air circulate and blow away C2O that she might breathe back in. Fresh air is important and can help reduce SIDS. The white noise of a fan will help her sleep better and longer, as well, which is a bonus for mama!
If you have more questions about your new baby, feel free to make an appointment with us for more safety information!