The so-called sudden baby death or death of the crib as it is also known, is the death of an apparently healthy baby that happens without explanation. Neither the doctor nor the autopsy is found a reason for the death, being diagnosed as sudden death. This fact is not considered a specific disease, sudden infant death is considered the first cause of death among babies from one month to one year of age. Even though research and studies on the subject have been carried out for over 20 years, no significant answer has been found to date. The problem cannot be avoided, however, some precautions serve to reduce the risks, such as how to position the baby to sleep for example.
Studies have shown that a very large number of babies who died due to sudden death syndrome were related to mothers who were smokers. They are also classified as risk factors:
- Premature and underweight babies
- Drug user mother
- Mothers aged 13 to 19 years
- Bottle feeding
- Sleeping position
- History of sudden death in the family
Exposure of the fetus to tobacco can lead to lung disorders that directly affect the functioning of the lungs, which can stop working overnight. The habit of sleeping on your stomach is also mentioned as a strong index, because the baby is unable to control his breathing as he should.
How to Reduce the Risks of Sudden Death?
The best way to put a baby to sleep is with the belly up or on the side. Cushions, toys and any object that may present a risk of suffocation inside the crib must be removed, including comforters, sheets and even protectors. Babies who sleep with their parents are also at risk from drowning, including blankets and pillows. If the parents are smokers, ingest tranquilizers or have a heavy sleep, the risks increase even more.
The use of tobacco during pregnancy is harmful to the health of the fetus, after birth the risks of sudden death for babies who have direct contact with smoke are also great due to inhalation, which is as strong as the adult who is swallowing directly the cigarette. As your lungs are fragile, the risk is even greater, so avoid environments where you have smokers .
Not overdoing the baby’s warm clothing and blanket is also a way to prevent it, since overheating the body can cause sudden death as well. It is indicated to check the baby’s body temperature by the neck and belly , never being measured by the extremities such as feet and hands, which are usually colder than the rest of the body.
Light blankets are enough to warm the baby in the crib. Sheets with elastic should be used to cover the bed so that they can be properly fixed on the mattress, preventing the baby from being able to pull and cover the face causing suffocation. Frequent visits to the pediatrician are also extremely important for monitoring the baby’s health and development properly. Mandatory vaccines must be given within the period indicated on the vaccination card, avoiding most infections.
See also: Newborn Care – Are We Home and Now?
My name is Dr. Alexis Hart I am 38 years old, I am the mother of 3 beautiful children! Different ages, different phases 16 years, 12 years and 7 years. In love with motherhood since always, I found it difficult to make my dreams come true, and also some more after I was already a mother.
Since I imagined myself as a mother, in my thoughts everything seemed to be much easier and simpler than it really was, I expected to get pregnant as soon as I wished, but it wasn’t that simple. The first pregnancy was smooth, but my daughter’s birth was very troubled. Joana was born in 2002 with a weight of 2930kg and 45cm, from a very peaceful cesarean delivery but she had already been born with congenital pneumonia due to a broken bag not treated with antibiotics even before delivery.