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Safer sleeping for babies, advice during Safer Sleep Week

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Heath experts in Rochdale are backing a national week-long campaign aimed at reducing the number of babies who die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

Safer Sleep Week is a national awareness campaign by the Lullaby Trust targeting anyone looking after a young baby. It aims to raise awareness of SIDS and equip parents and carers with information about how to reduce the risk. This year Rochdale Borough Safeguarding Children Partnership (RBSCP) and partners have joined forces to promote safer sleep for babies during Safer Sleep Week (14 – 20 March).

Greater awareness of safer sleep leads to a decrease in the numbers of babies dying. Sadly around 4 babies a week die from SIDS. But, making parents aware of the various risk factors that can contribute to the chances of an infant or child dying suddenly has a huge impact.

This year the Safer Sleep Week, run by the Lullaby Trust – a charity created to raise awareness of SIDS, provides expert advice on safer sleep for babies and offer emotional support for bereaved families.

There are several key messages for parents:


  • 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 cot or Moses basket in the same room as you for the first 6 months
  • Use a firm, flat, waterproof mattress in good condition
  • Never sleep on a sofa or in an armchair with your baby
  • Avoid letting your baby get too hot
  • Don’t cover your baby’s face or head while sleeping or use loose bedding
  • Don’t sleep your baby on a pod or nest or give them a pillow. Babies should not have anything soft around their heads while sleeping

Alison Kelly, Chief Nurse and Associate Director Quality and Safeguarding, NHS HMR CCG added: “Not all infant deaths are preventable but it’s vital that we do all we can to reduce the risk of those that are. By following this helpful advice you’ll be doing everything possible to reduce the risk of SIDS in your child.

We encourage anyone caring for a new baby to follow safer sleep advice and seek help from their midwife, health visitor or GP if you have any concerns.”

Further support and information can be found on the RBSCP webpage: https://www.rochdalesafeguarding.com/p/safeguarding-for-children/safer-sleep-for-babies, the Lullaby Trust website: https://www.lullabytrust.org.uk/ and on the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/sudden-infant-death-syndrome-sids/


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