Each year in the United States, approximately 3600 infants die from sleep-related infant deaths (such as sudden infant death syndrome [SIDS], accidental suffocation and strangulation in bed, and ill-defined deaths). For the past four decades, the American Academy of Pediatrics Task Force on SIDS has systematically reviewed the epidemiologic evidence on risk factors for sleep-related infant deaths and has released recommendations for a safe infant sleeping environment. The most recent (2016) recommendations include back sleep position, a firm and flat sleep surface, room-sharing without bed-sharing, and avoidance of soft bedding and overheating. Additional recommendations include avoidance of exposure to smoke, alcohol, and illicit drugs during pregnancy and after birth; breastfeeding; routine immunization; and use of a pacifier. Recommendations are described in detail, along with a brief description of the evidence for each recommendation.
KeywordsInfant mortality Infant sleep safety Sleep position Sudden infant death syndrome Sudden unexpected infant death Practice guidelines
American Academy of Pediatrics
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Consumer Product Safety Commission
Sudden infant death syndrome
Sudden unexpected infant death
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