Babies do not need soft bedding to be comfortable. Soft bedding, pillows and soft toys in bed with your baby increase the risk of sleep related death. Your baby should sleep in a crib or bassinet with a firm mattress. No pillows, soft toys, or heavy blankets should be present. If a blanket is needed it should be light, cover below the baby’s chest and be tucked in around the mattress.

Parents and children have a natural bond that develops through being cared for and loved by their parents, not through sleeping in the same bed. Babies should sleep near, not in, their parents’ bed.

Babies, like all people, have reflexes that protect their airways. There has been no increase in choking deaths since most babies have been placed on their backs for sleep, but the number of sleep associated deaths has decreased almost 40 percent.

It is uncommon for babies to have significant change in the shape of their heads because of back sleeping. Placing your baby on his stomach for tummy time helps eliminate this concern. Your baby should be placed on his tummy only when awake and being watched.

Babies are more likely to roll into a face down position when placed on their sides to sleep, dramatically increasing the risk of sleep related death.

Smoking and the use of drugs and alcohol increase the risk of sleep related deaths of babies. Co-sleeping increases the risk of sleep related deaths even in families in which no one smokes or uses drugs or alcohol. Every baby should sleep in his own crib or other devise made for babies to sleep in.

Babies learn sleep patterns through routine. Your baby should be placed in his crib to sleep every time he sleeps both at night and nap time.

The safest sleep environment for every baby is in his crib or other devise made for babies to sleep in. Sleeping in an adult bed increases the chance of sleep related death.