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Study Sheds Light on Preemies' Higher SIDS Risk
Date:12/13/2011

DS, she said. These include placing the baby to sleep exclusively on his or her back, breast-feeding if possible and avoiding exposure to cigarette smoke. "It is particularly important that young babies are not sleeping with parents in the parental bed or on a sofa, as evidence now shows these practices to be significant risks for SIDS."

The study appears online Dec. 12 and in the January 2012 print issue of Pediatrics.

Dr. Rachel Y. Moon, director of academic development for the Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., said that "preemies up to six months of age may be at higher risk for SIDS because their baroreflex is not as good and not as stable."

Do your best to eliminate any SIDS risks that are within your control, said Moon, who is a national expert on SIDS. "It is critical to try to give these babies every advantage they can get," she suggested, which includes placing them on their backs to sleep on a firm surface without blankets or anything that will cover their face. "Don't use pillows or bumper pads," she said. "Sometimes parents think they are doing the right thing, but they are unintentionally placing their infant in a more dangerous situation by surrounding him or her with pillows to keep them safe."

More information

First Candle has more on SIDS.

SOURCES: Rosemary Horne, Ph.D., deputy director, Ritchie Centre, Monash Institute of Medical Research, Clayton, Victoria, Australia; Rachel Y. Moon, M.D., director, academic development, Goldberg Center for Community Pediatric Health, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; Dec. 12, 2011, Pediatrics, online


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