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Safer Sleep: saving babies lives – A guide for professionals

Posted on: 10 February 2020

Public Health England have launched important information about how and where babies die, and how to prevent them from dying. Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is now very rare, but over 200 babies still die every year. 90% of these deaths are caused by hazardous co-sleeping situations.

Colleagues who work with families are being encouraged to talk to families and support them with understanding how to avoid the specific risks for their baby, you can help to reduce the number of babies dying.

The number of babies who die of SIDS could be reduced dramatically if families follow 3 key pieces of advice:

  • Put babies on their back for every sleep - Back sleeping needs to be consistent from day one. The odd night that a baby sleeps differently is the one where the risk of SIDS peaks.
  • Babies must sleep in a clear, flat space – A parent or carer must sleep in the same room (day and night) for the first six months.
  • Keep babies smoke free day and night before and after birth - the risk of SIDS is up to 10 times more if a baby shares a bed with a smoking parent.


Find out more ways you can help keep babies safe