A sleeping baby

“If we’ve learned anything, it’s that simple is best: babies should always sleep in a crib or bassinet, on their back, without soft toys, pillows, blankets or other bedding.”

Dr. Rachel Moon, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Virginia School of Medicine and lead author of the American Academy of Pediatrics' new infant sleep recommendations.

Published on

jun 22, 2022

Why It Matters: The American Academy of Pediatrics updated their infant sleep guidelines for the first time since 2016. The guidelines state that about "3,500 infants die from sleep-related infant deaths annually in the United States" and "urges parents to make sure the baby sleeps on a flat – not inclined – surface during sleep and strongly discourages bed-sharing."

  • Dr. Moon prefaced her statement with, "A baby’s death is tragic, heartbreaking and often preventable."
  • One of the main takeaways of the AAP recommendations is their stance on bed-sharing. Based on specific data regarding sleep-related infant deaths, AAP states they "are unable to recommend bed-sharing under any circumstances,” and instead recommend infants sleep in the same room but in a crib or bassinet for the first six months of life.
  • Other recommendations (click here for the entire list):
    • "Sitting devices, such as car seats, strollers, swings, infant carriers, and infant slings, are not recommended for routine sleep in the hospital or at home, particularly for infants younger than 4 months."
    • "Pacifier use is associated with reducing risk."
    • "Avoid the use of commercial devices that claim to reduce the risk of SIDS or other sleep-related deaths. There is no evidence that any of these devices reduce the risk of these deaths."
    • "Supervised, awake tummy time is recommended to facilitate infant development and to minimize development of positional plagiocephaly."
  • AAP's guidelines were just released on Tuesday; as there is more reaction to these guidelines, we will update this report.

News Release - American Academy of Pediatrics Updates Safe Sleep Recommendations: Back is Best (AAP.org)

New safe sleep guidelines for babies include flat beds and no bed-sharing (Washington Post)

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