Back to sleep

Published in Birthing Services, Sleep Medicine, For the Health of It Author: Julie Bunkowski, RNC-NIC, BSN

The Back to Sleep campaign began in 1994 to reduce the number of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) cases. Since its inception, death rates from SIDS has been reduced by 50 percent.

Unfortunately, many parents and caregivers still place babies on their stomachs to sleep. A recent survey by the Consumer Product Safety Commission revealed that only 43 percent of American parents put their babies to sleep on their backs.

For many years, parents did not place babies to sleep on their backs because they believed that the babies would choke on their spit up. Unfortunately, many caregivers — especially older family members and babysitters — still believe this misinformation. The survey also found that only 31 percent of African American parents compared to 47 percent of Caucasian parents and 38 percent of Hispanic parents place their babies to sleep on their backs.

You can save a baby’s life by making sure that everyone who cares for a baby in your circle of influence knows to place babies on their “Back to Sleep.”