WEDNESDAY, Sept. 12 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) is ramping up efforts to reduce the risk of sleep-related sudden infant deaths, the agency announced Wednesday.
In addition to placing infants under 1 year old on their backs for all sleep times, the Safe to Sleep campaign recommends parents and caregivers also take the following steps:
- Infants should always have their own safe place to sleep. This environment should be free from any soft bedding, blankets or quilts. Infants should also not share a bed with an adult.
- Infants should be breast-fed whenever possible. Breast-feeding, the NIH explained, is linked to a reduced risk of SIDS.
- Parents should also ensure infants do not become overheated.
- Infants should not be exposed to tobacco smoke.
- Breast-feeding mothers should avoid alcohol or other drugs.