Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Safe Sleeping for Infants

Keeping Our Newborn Grandchildren Safe When Sleeping

They are too precious to take any risks with.

I overheard a conversation at the coffee shop recently that disturbed me.  Three women who I assumed to be grandmothers were discussing how over protective their daughters and daughter-in-law were.  The conversation went something like this. 
  • First Grandmother “I just cannot believe that the hospital told them to put (child’s name) to sleep without any blankets.”

  • Second Grandmother: “I know I tried to give (daughter’s name) the quilted crib set that my mother made for her as a baby and she tried to tell me it was dangerous... it didn’t hurt her, it is beautiful if she is only going to use it for show I am going to keep it, maybe her brother will appreciate it”

  • Third Grandmother: “It's the nurses in the hospital and the Public Health Nurse that are filling their heads with all this, when (name of  grandchild) comes to our house I just do what I want.  What (her daughter-in-laws name) doesn't know will not hurt her.

  • I turned around in my chair and broke into their conversation, “I am sorry I could not help but over hear your conversation and as a mother myself I used bumper pads and blankets and I am so grateful that none of my children fell victim to SID as a result.  The nurses are right Sick Children’s hospital supports Safe Sleeping and it is making a real difference, less children under the age of one are dying in their sleep.”  My words fell on deaf ears.
As parents we provided our infant children with warm fluffy blankets, we put bumper pads around the cribs, for the most part we placed them on their stomachs to sleep and we took them to bed with us.  We were lucky as research now shows that all of these things have contributed to Sudden Infant Deaths.  

It may seem unnatural, even cruel to place a newborn on their back on a firm mattress with no blankets And it is the safest way for them to sleep.  

 If we want to knit, crochet or sew we should make the new cocoon or sack like blankets that meet safe sleeping guidelines like this free pattern through the Drops website.  The internet is full of free patterns.
Click here for free pattern

As you can see the yarn is not fluffy.  The issue is that often with fluffy soft yarns fibers become airborne and become lodged in the infants airways.

There is no hood so no matter how the infant turns their head their airway is free.

The sack or cocoon stays in place around the infants body so it will not get balled up around their face - again a clear airway.

Please take the time to educate yourself on Safe Sleeping by watching this video put out by Sick Children's Hospital. 

As grandparent’s we do not have the right to go against the wishes of our children the parents of our grandchildren, even when they are not around.  We can never assume to know what is best for our grandchildren.  Our role, no our job is to support support our children in their role as parents and this means that we practice and support Safe Sleeping practices in our homes.

Grandma Snyder
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