ALL Co-sleeping Increases Risk of SIDS No Matter How Careful You Think You're Being

sleeping babyWhen it comes to co-sleeping and the dangers associated with it, many parents believe the benefits outweigh the risks of SIDS, especially because they're doing it the right way. They don't smoke, or drink alcohol, and or take drugs, so their babies shouldn't be at a higher risk ... or so they thought.

A new study, however, found that the risk of SIDS increases five-fold when parents share a bed with an infant, even if the parents don't smoke, drink alcohol, or take drugs -- even if the baby was breastfed. According to MedPage Today, the study found that 9 out of 10 SIDS births that involve co-sleeping would not have occurred if the parents weren't sharing a bed with their children. That's pretty sobering information.

In all, 22 percent of babies who died from SIDS were found to have been sleeping with a parent or caregiver when they died. Of course, smoking, drugs, and alcohol definitely increase the odds of SIDS -- smoking ups the risk of SIDS for 2-week-olds 65-fold when parents co-sleep, and a mother drinking more than two alcoholic drinks a day ups the risk 89-fold. But still, any bed sharing with infants has some increased risk. One of the study's researchers from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Robert Carpenter PhD, told MedPage:

The message is clear, but it is one the bed-sharing advocates don't want to hear. For the first 3 months of life, babies should not sleep with their parents. Period. After that, if the parents don't smoke, it might be OK.

I know there are plenty of benefits to co-sleeping, and I know there are precautions you can take to make it safer. But this study makes those seem somewhat irrelevant. If you can really prevent your child's death by NOT co-sleeping, are you willing to take the risk?

Some parents may answer yes, and that's their decision to make. But everyone should have all of the information before they make it, including this study, which hopefully will make some people rethink their decision.

Does this study change your mind about co-sleeping?


Image via eyeliam/Flickr

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blunt... bluntcakes

WARNING: ALL your children have a risk of dying whether you co sleep or not.

To each their own, I'm sure parents have researched and weighed the risks and benefits of co sleeping or having baby in a bassinet

Alexa... AlexaAdams

What about those beds that attach to the side of the parents bed?

blunt... bluntcakes

In all seriousness though, my sister knows a couple who lost their newborn to rolling over and suffocating her while in their bed. Do what you see is fitting but for me the risk outweighs the benefit, I just couldn't fathom this happening to me or anyone else I know.

youth... youthfulsoul

It me this seems like common sense so no I'm not surprised in the least.

JessL... JessLogansMommy

What about the 78% that were not sleeping with a parent or caregiver when they died? So wouldn't that mean that sleeping by themselves would increase the risk of SIDS?

nonmember avatar Cheyanne

My son has reflux and almost choked in his bassinet at a week old. Now hes 3 months and still sleeps on his tummy on my chest with a blanket on his back and i tuck each side under my back so he doesnt roll.

miche... micheledo

What about the studies that show co-sleeping decreases SIDS????

I am beginning to not trust any study of any kind. It seems like they can be made to have any result you want!

Hello07 Hello07

Jesslogansmommy: you'd think huh?

corri... corrinacs

I couldn't co-sleep!  I don't think I'd ever go to sleep if I did!!!  Both of my kids are happy!!  But in the back of my mind, this is what I'd be afraid of!!!  I could see it easily happening!

nonmember avatar FarmersWife

If the death was preventable- it was NOT SIDS. It is so hard to do a proper study on this. But research shows the percentage of children that die in a crib is massively higher than the percentage that die in a parents bed. In a parents bed is always ruled that a parent is at fault- you simply can't prove otherwise while a crib death is clearly not a parents fault.

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