Does sharing a bed with my child affect the risk of SIDS?
Extensive research across the world has identified very clear risk factors for SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) and, importantly, ways that parents can reduce the chance of this happening. Without a doubt, sharing a bed increases the risk of SIDS and should be avoided. Babies readily overheat in adult beds and may suffocate amongst the soft bedding. Research shows that since the Back to Sleep campaign, although the number of babies dying from SIDS has more than halved, many SIDS babies were bed-sharing at the time they died.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has great up-to-date safe sleep advice with simple steps to reduce your baby’s risk of SIDS.
Most parents instinctively want to keep their baby close at night. The good news is that you are advised to share a room with your baby until they are at least 6 months old and ideally up your baby’s first birthday. So, avoid bed sharing but do share a room – if your baby’s crib is close by you can respond to their needs while keeping them safe.About Dr. Catherine Hill