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Tips on how to ensure your baby sleeps safely

Guidance on how to sleep your baby to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or cot death.

Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the sudden and unexplained death of a baby where no cause is found. While SIDS is rare, it can still happen and there are steps you can take to help reduce the chance of this tragedy occurring.

You can use the following advice from The Lullaby Trust to ensure your baby has a safer sleep, or you can talk to your midwife or health visitor if you have any questions or concerns.

Things you can do

  • Always place your baby on their back to sleep.

  • Keep your baby smoke free during pregnancy and after birth.

  • Place your baby to sleep in a separate cot or Moses basket in the same room as you for the first six months.

  • Breastfeed your baby.

  • Use a firm, flat, waterproof mattress in good condition.

Things to avoid

  • Never sleep on a sofa or in an armchair with your baby.

  • Don’t sleep in the same bed as your baby if you smoke, drink or take drugs or are extremely tired.

  • Don't sleep in the same bed as your baby if your baby was born prematurely or was of low birth weight.

  • Avoid letting your baby get too hot.

  • Don’t cover your baby’s face or head while sleeping or use loose bedding.

  • Do not use sleep positioners or wedges as these can cause suffocation.

The Lullaby Trust provides specialist support for bereaved families, promotes expert advice on safer baby sleep and raises awareness on sudden infant death. Visit their website for more detailed information on safer sleeping for babies.