Share a Room With Your Newborn to Reduce the Risk of SIDS by 50%

Kelsey Clark

Parenthood can feel like navigating a minefield for many first-timers, but no accident is more terrifying than sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Defined as the "unexplained death, usually during sleep, of a seemingly healthy baby less than a year old" by Mayo Clinic, SIDS is most likely to affect male babies during their second or third month of life. While the causes behind SIDS are relatively unexplained, a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics has shed a much-needed light on the terrifying syndrome.

Most notably, the academy recommends that infants sleep in the same room as their parents, in separate beds, for the first six months to a year of their life. This simple lifestyle adjustment can reportedly decrease an infant's risk of developing SIDS by up to 50%. "Approximately 3,500 infants die annually in the United States from sleep-related infant deaths, including sudden infant death syndrome," reads the report. "Recommendations for a safe sleep environment include supine positioning, the use of a firm sleep surface, room-sharing without bed-sharing, and the avoidance of soft bedding and overheating."

The report contends that, by sleeping in the same room as their newborn, parents can easily respond to any signs of distress, however subtle. "While it might disturb your sleep a bit more, the ability to raise your head, take a look, and make sure your baby is okay is more than worth it," writes Scary Mommy of the new recommendation. 

What do you think of the Pediatric Academy's suggestion? Do you think it's necessary to sleep in the same room as your infant for one year? Share your thoughts below. 

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