SIDS is a parent’s worst nightmare, and he or she may do whatever possible to protect the baby. Yet, such attempts may be misguided when SIDS-reducing or preventing products come into play. In concept, such products appear helpful – and an answer to keeping a baby from suffocating. However, according to a statement published recently by the FDA, the government agency has never approved any SIDS-preventing baby products and advises manufacturers of them to remove such claims from their packaging.
If you’re a parent, you may have come across SIDS-preventing baby products or may have even purchased them yourself. If you haven’t come across any or aren’t familiar with the whole spectrum of SIDS-preventing baby products, they include wedges, sleep positioners, mattresses, sleep surfaces, bedding, pillows, and sleep tents. For most of these items, the baby is positioned facing up, and the product is designed to keep the baby in place throughout the night, preventing any possible suffocation. Yet, according to the FDA, babies can slip out of such products and end up suffocating. In fact, 13 deaths from SIDS-preventing products have occurred over the past 13 years.
Gearing their statement to parents, the FDA says that such products are useless and even dangerous. Manufacturers, as well, should remove any SIDS-preventing claims from packaging, even those from medical professionals, and wait for the FDA’s clearance or approval.
But, if you can’t use such products, what’s the best positioning to keep a baby safe? The FDA recommends putting the baby on its back in an empty crib. Any objects inside can be a source of suffocation, including stuffed animals, other soft toys, and crib bedding. Cords, as well, can turn into choking hazards, and parents are recommended to keep cords from monitors, lamps, or electronics at least three feet away from a crib or not have them in the room at all.