Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Deadly Decision: Where Should Baby Sleep?

Date:
October 6, 2003
Source:
Saint Louis University
Summary:
Babies who are put to sleep in an adult bed face a risk of suffocation that is as much as 40 times greater than babies who sleep in standard cribs, a Saint Louis University researcher says in this month's issue of Pediatrics.

ST. LOUIS -- Babies who are put to sleep in an adult bed face a risk of suffocation that is as much as 40 times greater than babies who sleep in standard cribs, a Saint Louis University researcher says in this month's issue of Pediatrics.

"The odds of death go up dramatically among babies who use adult beds," says James Kemp, M.D., one of the researchers and an associate professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University School of Medicine and director the Sleep Lab at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital. "The numbers are gigantic, much higher than I had thought. It's the best data available right now."

Between 13 and 14 percent of parents say they share beds with their babies. Dr. Kemp calls for a public awareness campaign to alert parents to the dangers of the practice.

"Granted, you want to be close to your baby at night time. But we don't think babies should be in adult beds. This has to be a risk assessment and it remains a terrible idea to share an adult bed with a baby."

Dr. Kemp says younger infants may be at the greatest risk of death in adult beds because they lack the motor skills to escape potential threats to their safety, such as soft bedding or being trapped between the bed and the wall. The study examined the risk of babies under 8 months suffocating.

"For beds not designed for infants, it is difficult to control potential hazardous arrangements causing suffocation," Dr. Kemp says. "Infant deaths diagnosed as suffocation in adult beds and on sofas are being increasingly reported in the U.S. while suffocation deaths in cribs are declining."

The study looked at reported deaths during the four-year period from 1995 to 1998, and found the risk of suffocation for babies in cribs was .63 deaths per 100,000 infants, compared 25.5 deaths per 100,000 infants who suffocate in adult beds.

October is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) awareness month, and Dr. Kemp is optimistic that the new research that quantifies the risk factor of putting babies to sleep in adult beds will convince parents to do everything they can to keep their babies safe.

In 1992 the American Academy of Pediatrics began recommending that parents place their babies on their backs to sleep to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Since the awareness campaign, the SIDS rate has been cut nearly in half.

"While sleep position plays an importing role in keeping babies safe, it is only part of the solution," Dr. Kemp says. "Putting a baby to sleep in an adult bed is dangerous, and a risk that parents don't have to take. A sleeping baby belongs in a crib or other approved baby bed."

###

Established in 1836, Saint Louis University School of Medicine has the distinction of awarding the first M.D. degree west of the Mississippi River. Saint Louis University School of Medicine is a pioneer in geriatric medicine, organ transplantation, chronic disease prevention, cardiovascular disease, neurosciences and vaccine research, among others. The School of Medicine trains physicians and biomedical scientists, conducts medical research, and provides health services on a local, national and international level.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Saint Louis University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Saint Louis University. "Deadly Decision: Where Should Baby Sleep?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 October 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031006064748.htm>.
Saint Louis University. (2003, October 6). Deadly Decision: Where Should Baby Sleep?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031006064748.htm
Saint Louis University. "Deadly Decision: Where Should Baby Sleep?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/10/031006064748.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins