Put your newborn in a sturdy, lidless cardboard box to sleep? Believe it or not, it’s been going on in Finland for some time and is slowly starting in the United States in states like New Jersey and Ohio where hospitals are sending infants and parents home with a box for the baby to sleep in. The idea behind the box is safe sleeping.
The loss of an infant to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is devastating for parents, families and their health professionals. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), SIDS claims the lives of nearly 3,500 babies each year in the United States. It’s the leading cause of death for infants 1 to 12 months of age. But by following a few tips, parents and grandparents can help prevent SIDS.
It has been over 20 years since the National Institute of Child Health and Development launched its Back to Sleep campaign to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). That first initiative, started in 1994, saw infant death rates by SIDS drop by over half in 10 years. Further research, however, showed that in the same time period, many babies died not only while sleeping tummy side-down in their cribs, but also while sleeping in beds and on couches with their parents.