5-Month-Old Baby Died After She Rolled Over And Got Tangled In A Blanket While Sleeping. How Can Such Deaths Be Prevented?
October 25, 2018 19:08 By Fabiosa
Every year, about 3,500 sleep-related infant deaths occur in the United States, according to the CDC. In the UK, about 240 babies lose their lives to SIDS every year, according to The Lullaby Trust. Since the cause of these deaths isn't always known, we don't have a surefire way to prevent them. However, some steps can reduce the risk of SIDS and other causes of sleep-related deaths. Here's Cleo's story.
5-month-old died in her sleep, doctor tells inconsolable mom it's not her fault
Sadie Hammill-Girling from Troon, Cornwall, was home with her 5-month-old daughter, Cleo. The baby girl was sleeping upstairs when Sadie heard the dog barking.
She ran upstairs and found her baby daughter lying in her Moses basket, tangled in a blanket. The baby wasn’t breathing.
The mom told the inquest:
I left Cleo for 30 minutes when I heard Jack Russell barking. She was no longer on her back.
She was now on her front, with a blanket tangled around her. She had gone limp and wouldn't wake up.
Sadie frantically dialed 911 and paramedics arrived fast, but they didn't manage to save the little girl.
The investigation of the baby girl’s death found she died of natural causes. Professor Peter Fleming, a pediatrician, told the grieving mom at the hearing:
Cleo did not die because of something you did or didn't do.
She died despite the fact you were doing the right things, and I'm as sure as I can be that she didn't suffer.
After the hearing, the mom spoke to the press and said:
Cleo was a beautiful happy baby and she will be dearly missed. Not a day goes by when I don't think of her.
The time I had with her was absolutely amazing and everyone loved her. Our piglet will be deeply missed by all of us.
How to lower the risk of sudden infant death syndrome?
Sudden infant death syndrome is every new parent’s worst nightmare. What makes it even worse is that it’s not always clear what causes it, which leaves us wondering if we’re doing everything we can to prevent it.
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Creating a safe sleeping environment for your baby can reduce the risk of SIDS. The Canadian Pediatric Society has provided the following recommendations for parents of infants:
- Babies should sleep on their backs, only in cribs that conform to current safety standards.
- Babies shouldn’t sleep in the same bed with their parents, as that increases the risk of suffocation and entrapment.
- Put your baby’s crib in your bedroom. If the baby is suddenly in distress at night, this set-up makes you able to hear him better.
- Once your baby learns to turn over, it’s not necessary to turn him on his back during sleep. Also, you shouldn’t use any items to prop the baby to keep him on his back during sleep.
- There should be no pillows, cushions, blankets, other soft items, or loose bedding in the baby’s crib.
- Babies shouldn’t sleep on air mattresses, waterbeds, and other soft surfaces. Also, car seats and infant carriers shouldn’t be used for sleep.
- Babies shouldn’t sleep or nap on couches, sofas, or armchairs, either alone or with you. It can raise the risk of suffocation.
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Follow these simple and plain recommendations to keep your baby safe!