It is estimated that as many as 7000-infants a year die of sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS. For years, the American Academy Of Pediatrics has recommended that babies sleep on their backs or on their side to help protect against breathing in their own carbon dioxide while they sleep. Tuesday, our guest on HealthWise at Five was Dr. Kirsten Robinson from the Texas Tech Health Science Center. She tells us that pediatricians are trying to get the word out to parents and caregivers that the AAP guidelines have changed a little.
Dr. Robinson, says, "It has been thought that side sleeping was okay. But they have found in research that there still is an increased risk over sleeping only on the back. So, the AAP is now recommending that infants be placed solely on the back. Pacifier use, the mechanics by which it works is not clear but it has been shown to decrease the risk of SIDS. So, the AAP is encouraging pacifier use up to a year of age". Dr. Robinson adds that there is also new evidence that a small table fan or a ceiling fan in the nursery may help cut the risk of SIDS. Of course, you don't want a direct draft on the baby, just enough to keep the air circulating.