Newborn babies sleep for up to sixteen hours in periodic cycles. Babies sleep in periods of three to four hours, and need time & attention before they are independent.
Especially the first 6-months is a crucial time in which parents should be extra attentive and must ensure their baby sleeps safely. And in this guide, we will discuss tips on baby sleep safety, but before that, let’s look at what safe sleep means.
Safe sleep is to put your little one to sleep in a way that the baby is safe from the danger of inability to breathe and choking. Safety measures are practiced to keep the baby secure against any harm.
The first and most important thing to do is to put the baby to sleep on their back. Posture and body positioning plays a big role in saving the baby against the unforeseen risks.
Give your baby some playtime on a water play mat that’s designed to encourage some fun tummy time. The mat also helps babies to develop hand and eye coordination. And once the baby feels tired and sleepy, they can be put to sleep in a rock and soothe sleeper made to safely cover the baby and fall asleep.
This is another important point to look out for while putting your baby to sleep. When a baby’s face or head is covered, this can cause overheating which can have adverse effects on the baby's health.
To make sure the bedding does not cover your baby’s head and face, buy bedsheets that are lightweight. When covering the baby with bedding, only cover them to the chest level.
When a baby is exposed to smoke, it adversely affects their health. The harm of smoking due to smoking cigarettes is so strong that when a parent smokes away from the baby, the smoke can still have a strong harmful effect on the child.
The crib should be such that it meets various safety standards for protecting your little one. If you want a second-hand cot, make sure the baby cot is less than 10 years old. Also, such a crib should be in good functioning condition, and none of its parts should be broken.
It is essential to avoid second-hand cribs with small issues like broken portions, loose parts, or tapered sides. The baby cot should be such that it meets the safety standards.
The crib mattress must be covered with a tightly fitted soft sheet. Also, the mattress should be such that its dimensions are as per the size of the crib. It should neither be too small to slide around nor so large that it doesn’t fit in the cot properly.
The mattress should be so optimally sized that it fits inside the crib snuggly. This way, there is no gap or open space between the baby cot and the mattress
A safe environment should further be complemented with a baby support seat. A baby support seat is an item for providing your baby with comfortable support in a fluffy seat that’s ideal for inducing sleep.
For every parent, it is essential not to sleep with their babies in the same bed. Therefore, a separate bassinet or cot is important so that the baby is entirely separate in their own space.
When it is time to sleep, nothing should be left in the cot besides the mattress, the sheet, and your baby. Here are some of the things parents knowingly or unknowingly leave inside cribs:
- Baby toys
These are some of the most common items that need to be taken out. And if you’re leaving such things inside the crib, you’re putting your baby at risk of choking, suffocation, or entrapment. In case it is cold, then you should consider a wearable blanket.
Swaddling a baby in a blanket when it is time to sleep can be dangerous for a myriad of reasons. Although swaddling is good practice, it is dangerous until the baby does not learn to roll over. This means you will have to wait for about 4 to 5 months before you start to swaddle your infant.
Swaddling can often cause the child to feel suffocated and entangled, which is dangerous. Therefore, safe sleep should be ensured in this respect too.
Pediatricians claim many babies are at risk of SIDS when they sleep on their sides or are put to sleep on their belly. As long as the baby cannot roll over, you must put them on their back when going to sleep.
The above-discussed points are the most important factors to consider when putting your baby to sleep. Parents who neglect to take the necessary sleep safety measures should refrain from doing so. Safe sleep for your baby should be taken seriously, and the above tips will help you to take the measures necessary to ensure this.