Cot death falling but young mums still at risk
We had some good news earlier this week: the latest stats show that the number of cot deaths has fallen slightly. Figures fell from 320 cases in 2009 to 287 in 2010.
However certain areas of the country, such as the North West and Wales, still have fairly high rates. Mums under 20 are also 3.4 times more likely to have a cot death than older parents. Read more
Cot death is very rare but you can reduce the risk even further by following our bubbalicious advice:
• Place your baby on their back to sleep (and not on the front or side)
• Cut smoking in pregnancy — dads too! And don’t let anyone smoke in the same room as your baby
• The safest place for your baby to sleep is in a crib or cot in a room with you for the first six months
• Do not let your baby get too hot, and keep your baby’s head uncovered
• Never sleep with your baby on a sofa or armchair
• It’s dangerous for your baby to sleep in your bed if you (or your partner):
o are a smoker (even if you never smoke in bed or at home)
o have been drinking alcohol
o take medication or drugs that make you drowsy
o feel very tired
o if your baby was premature (born before 37 weeks)
o if your baby was low birth weight (less than 2.5kg or 51/2lb)
o if your baby is less than 4 months old.
• Settling your baby to sleep (day and night) with a dummy can reduce the risk of cot death, even if the dummy falls out while your baby is asleep.
• Breastfeed your baby. Establish breastfeeding before starting to use a dummy.