SIDS & SBS
We at the Orange County Child Care Association are committed to communicating important information based on standards that can reduce the risk of SIDS and eliminate cases of SBS deaths in children. We hope that all providers, parents, grandparents and all caregivers read this information to educate themselves to assist in reducing cases of SIDS and eliminating SBS deaths.
What is SIDS?
SIDS stands for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. This is when a healthy baby under the age of 1 years old dies suddenly and the death is unexplained. Since the launching of the Back to Sleep campaign in 1994 the National Institute of Child Health & Human Development reports that the SIDS rate in the U.S. has decreased by more than 50%. Yet despite the best efforts of supporters, SIDS remains the number one cause of death for infants from one month to one year of age.
There are many resources available to both provider and parent regarding reducing the risk of SIDS, when a death occurs, support for families and more. We have included some links to various resources and support groups in relation to SIDS.
We hope you find these resources beneficial in understanding what you as a provider, parent or caregiver of children can do regarding assisting in reducing the risk of SIDS.
Safe Sleep – Easy Steps for Caregivers
Healthy babies should always sleep on their backs. Side sleeping is not as safe as back sleeping and is not advised.
Get a physician’s note for non-back sleepers that explains why the baby should not use a back-sleeping position.
Use safety-approved cribs and firm mattresses (cradles and bassinets may provide safe sleeping enclosures, but safety standards have not been established for these items).
Keep cribs free of toys, stuffed animals, and extra bedding.
Place the child’s feet to the foot of the crib and tuck in a light blanket along the sides and foot of the mattress. The blanket should not come up higher than the infant’s chest. Another option is to use sleep clothing and nothing else in the infant’s crib.
Sleep only 1 baby per crib.
Keep the room at a temperature that is comfortable for a lightly clothed adult.
Visually check on sleeping babies often.
No smoking around babies. Make sure babies are being watched when you go outside to smoke. Child care providers who smoke should do so outside, with an overcoat on. The overcoat will be removed when they return to work. Never allow smoking in a room where babies sleep, as exposure to smoke in a room where babies sleep, as exposure to smoke is linked to an increased risk of SIDS.
Have supervised “tummy time” for awake babies. This will help babies strengthen their muscles and develop normally.
Teach staff about safe sleep policies and practices and be sure to review these practices often.
What is SBS?
SBS stands for Shaken Baby Syndrome. SBS is the collection of signs and symptoms resulting from violent shaking of an infant or small child. This is a form of child abuse.
In America every year an estimated 1,200 – 1,400 children are shaken for whom treatment is sought. Of these tiny victims, 25 -30% die as a result of their injuries. The rest will have lifelong complications. It is likely that many more babies suffer from the effects of SBS yet no one knows because SBS victims rarely have any external evidence of trauma.
Common Symptoms of Shaken Baby Syndrome:
Lethargy / decreased muscle tone
Decreased appetite, poor feeding or vomiting for no apparent reason
Grab-type bruises on arms or chest are rare
No smiling or vocalization
Poor sucking or swallowing
Rigidity or posturing
Head or forehead appears larger than usual or soft-spot on head appears to be bulging
Inability to lift head
Inability of eyes to focus or track movement or unequal size of pupils
It’s important for parents and care providers to have a plan when they can no longer cope with a child and fear they may harm the child.
SBS is 100% preventable ! ! !
P.O. Box 26769, Santa Ana, CA 92799
Orange County Department of Education
200 Kalmus Dr. Costa Mesa, AS 92626
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Child Care Association