The Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital wants anyone who cares for a baby to keep an uncluttered crib in mind. Its part of a Safe Sleep Awareness Campaign called Safe to Sleep.
Some parents of newborns might think about decorating the inside of a crib. However, Nursing Director for Pediatrics, Linda McAleer says parents are often deceived by magazine pictures of decorated cribs that don’t show the dangers of placing items inside.
“Where there’s pretty bumpers, and all of these stuffed animals that are cozy comfy and pretty,” said McAleer. “And so that for some parents has been a push back because they want their babies to have the best and they want their babies to feel loved.”
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome statistics in Syracuse from 2008 to 2010, affected 9.9 babies per one-thousand live births. That’s higher than the national average, according to Regional Coordinator of the Sudden Infant and Child Death Resource Center, Clemencia Molina. She says poverty can contribute to the problem.
“If you don’t have a separate safe place to keep your baby you might bring him into the bed, and the bed increases the risk because now you have an adult body that can in the exhaustion of first year parenting roll over of the baby,” said Molina.
Molina says babies should be placed in a crib on their backs and pillows should not be placed beneath the head. Sleeper sacks are also recommended, instead of blankets that a baby could get wrapped up in and suffocate. Molina says the sleep sacks can help during the cold Central New York Winters.
“It allows for the baby to be warm without having a loose article of clothing,” said Molina. “Loose clothing can wrap around his or her head.”
These crib precautions should be taken through a baby’s first birthday in order to ensure safety. The Upstate Golisano Children’s Hospital is giving parents new sleep sacks to parents of infants at Hospital and children born at the Jim and Dede Walsh Center Family Birth Center at their Community Campus. Their coalition partners, Reach CNY, Children’s Consortium, Madison County Maternal Health, and Cortland County Maternal Health will also be giving out sacks. Caregivers can also receive more tips in order to reduce the risk of SIDS and other sleep related causes.