RD, LDN, CBS
Certified in Maternal and Infant Nutrition from Cornell, Angela’s mission is to help people reach their wellness goals. She also helps run a program that teaches pregnant women about how a healthy lifestyle optimizes prenatal and postnatal care.
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Creating a safe sleep environment that changes with your child’s age and developmental stage is essential. The American Academy of Pediatrics states guidelines for safe sleep for infants through age 1 to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), suffocation or entrapment. Familiarizing yourself with these guidelines will help to keep your baby safe and happy, not to mention give you greater peace of mind:
For even more tips on how to create a safe sleep environment as your baby grows, read What to Do.
Check your baby’s sleep environment each and every time you put her to bed for a nap or for the night
Check for loose items in the crib, like blankets or toys. Also check for cords from devices or window blinds, which can pose strangulation hazards.
Change the height of the crib as your baby grows
Lower the crib mattress as your baby becomes more mobile, even before she can pull to her knees or stand.
Transfer your baby to a toddler bed once she can climb out of the crib
Toddlers are known escape artists, so you’ll want to keep her entire room as safe a space as her crib, toddler bed or sidecar. Bolt all the furniture to the walls and remove any extraneous toys or other items. Cover electrical outlets and use safety outlets on the windows. A gate at the door or at the top of the stairs may also be necessary.
Communicate the sleep safety guidelines with your child’s caregivers
Tell anyone who is watching your child (grandparents, babysitters, day care providers) about the safe sleep environment guidelines. You’ll all want to be on the same page for safe sleep!
“What does a safe sleep environment look like?” US Department of Health and Human Services. Date accessed 6 August 2018. “Reduce the Risk of SIDS & Suffocation.” American Academy of Pediatrics. Date accessed 6 August 2018.