Sleep Safety for Baby

Roanoke Fire-EMS, The SW Virginia Alliance for Safe Babies, and Safe Kids want to remind you to "Make Every Night a Safe Night" when it comes to safe sleep for baby! Over 2,500 babies ages 1 month to 1 year die of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) each year. The SIDS rate has dropped by more than half since the Back to Sleep Campaign. Here are some safe sleep tips to keep your baby safe:
  • Normal, healthy infants should always be placed on their back to sleep (unless otherwise directed by your doctor).
  • Never "co-sleep" with your baby - you could accidentally suffocate them!
  • Do not put blankets, toys or pillows in the crib with your child, instead use a sleep sack or thin blanket specifically designed for infants or consider swaddling.
  • The mattress and mattress pad/sheet should fit snugly and be firm and smooth.
  • Don't use pillow-like bumper pads - they are a suffocation hazard.
  • Always keep the drop side of the crib up when the baby is in the crib.
  • Never place the crib near windows (fall hazard), draperies, blinds or wall mounted decorative accessories with long cords (strangulation hazard).
  • Make sure your crib is not on the recall list.
  • Make sure the crib is in good condition (no broken or loose screws, brackets or slats).
  • Crib slats or spindles should be spaced no more than 2.375 inches apart and none should be loose or missing.
  • Do not have cutout areas on the headboard or footboard so baby's head cannot get trapped.
  • Do not have any cracked or peeling paint, splinters or rough edges.
  • Mobiles should be removed when the baby can pull himself up.
  • Do not overdress your baby.
  • Supervise your child in play yards/pack and plays.
  • Bed rails are not designed for infant use so don't use them in place of a crib.
  • If using bed rails for older children, follow the manufacturers instructions.
  • Don't use a bed rail on a bunk bed, water mattes or bed without a box spring.
  • If using a toddler bed, choose a bed that is low to the ground.
  • Place toddler beds safely in a room away from windows, heaters, wall lamps, drapes and blind cords.
Hand-Me-Downs
It is not recommended to use hand-me-downs, but if you must use older bed items, make sure to follow these tips:
  • Check recalls.
  • Inspect the product for missing hardware or broken pieces.
  • Don't purchase cribs at garage sales, thrift shops or other places where you don't know their history.