(NAPSI)—Here’s eye-opening news about babies: According to the National Sleep Foundation, nearly one in four parents have their children sleep in their beds for at least part of the night.
While this has long been popular around the world because it can encourage bonding and help everyone get more sleep, many doctors, boards of health and other safety experts suggest you have to be very careful about how you go about it.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has come up with a few safety and comfort suggestions to help the whole family sleep better at night:
- Always place babies to sleep on their backs during naps and at nighttime.
- Avoid letting the baby get too hot. Dress the baby lightly for sleep. Set the room temperature in a range that is comfortable for a lightly clothed adult.
- Place your baby on a firm mattress, covered by a fitted sheet.
- Babies should sleep in an area that’s always smoke free.
- Toys and other soft bedding, including fluffy blankets, comforters, pillows, stuffed animals, bumper pads, and wedges should not be in the crib with the baby.
- Sleep clothing such as SwaddleMe blankets are safer than a traditional blanket.
In addition, Dr. James J. McKenna, of the Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory at the University of Notre Dame, has this advice:
- Adult beds were not designed to ensure infants’ safety, and he says infants should not sleep with other children, only with a responsible adult prepared to take responsibility for the baby.
- Mothers with very long hair should tie it up at night to keep it from getting wrapped around their baby’s neck if they share the bed.
- Anyone on sedatives, medications or drugs, intoxicated or a very sound sleeper, should not co-sleep on the same surface with an infant.
One solution for many parents is a special sleeper designed just for co-sleeping infants. The By Your Side Sleeper provides a cozy environment with easy access to soothe baby and may be the safest way for baby to sleep next to you.
Designed to put your baby’s comfort and safety first, it has a sturdy metal frame to keep you from rolling over on top of your baby during sleep. Mesh sides provide a clear view of your baby for parental peace of mind at all times and help air circulate to protect baby from overheating. The firm mattress pad has a washable fitted sheet in soft, comfortable fabrics. Some models have soothing melodies, sounds and two-speed vibration to calm baby and help encourage peaceful sleep.