Sleep is a word that brings mixed emotions and means countless long nights for practically every new parent. We won’t beat around the bush when we say tackling nighttime sleep with your little one is no easy task. Although you may feel like you’ll do just about anything to get some sleep,safe sleep for Baby is always the number one priority. That's why we've put together this safe sleep checklist—based on proven practices—to help you make sure your child is sleeping safely. Whether you're a first-time mom or experienced parent, use this checklist as a guide for creating a safe sleep environment for your child.
Make sure your baby’s crib:
→ Doesn’t have bumpers
→ Doesn’t have any loose objects like blankets, pillows, toys, stuffed animals, etc.
→ Doesn’t have drop-down sides
→ Doesn’t have any gaps around the edges of the mattress
→ Doesn’t have slats more than 2 ⅜ inches apart
→ Does have firmly-fitted sheets on the mattress
→ Does have the recommended mattress height -click here to learn more.
Make sure your baby’s sleep surface is:
→ Flat (any elevated position is unsafe)
→ Firm (no cushions, pillow tops, or pads)
→ Clear of all loose objects (blankets, toys, stuffed animals, pillows, etc.)
→ Specifically labeled as a crib, play yard, or bassinet (sleepers, nappers, loungers, or any other named surfaces should not be used)
→ Their own space (no bed-sharing with parents or siblings)
→ At least 3 feet away from furniture, windows or cords
Your swaddling should be:
→ Snug around the chest, but still leave room for your hand to slide in
→ Loose around the hips
→ Stopped when your little one starts to show signs of rolling
If you choose to use a pacifier:
→ Only use one that’s made for babies - never substitute with items like teethers, toys, or your own finger
→ Never attach the pacifier to their clothing with a string or ribbon
→ Don’t put it in their mouth while they're sleeping - wait until they're calm and awake
Your baby’s sleepwear should be:
→ Loose-fitting and snug at the wrist and ankles
→ Free of strings or ribbons
→ Made of breathable, light fabric
If you’re using a bassinet:
→ Transition away from the bassinet when Baby outgrows it. This can mean when they reach the weight/height limit or when your little one can roll out, sit or climb.
→ Only use the mattress sold with the bassinet.
Your baby’s room should be:
→ Cool - between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal
→ Well-ventilated with fresh air
Your baby should be:
→ Placed on their back for the entire first year
→ Allowed to sleep on their tummy if they can roll independently
→ Without any bows or clips in their hair during sleep
If Baby is:
→ Being snuggled or held for sleep, the caregiver must remain awake at all times
→ Asleep in a car seat, swing, stroller, or carrier, your little one needs to be moved to a flat, firm surface as soon as you reasonably can, recommended by the AAP
→ Asleep in a car seat, it’s okay as long as the seat is installed properly in the car and Baby is properly buckled. Do not swaddle in the car seat. Do not use positioners, toys, padding, etc.
→ In a car seat outside of the car, the following must apply:
Baby must be buckled in
Baby’s face must be visible at all times to the caregiver
Car seats should be placed in the upper portion of the shopping cart or in a stroller
Remove Baby from the car seat once you arrive at your destination
Your baby’s bedtime routine should be::
→ Relaxing and calming, without too much stimulation
→ Consistent from night to night
→ A time for you to bond with your little one - try reading a book or singing a lullaby together!
Sleep is a tricky subject, especially for new parents. That’s why we’ve created award-winning technology that helps you monitor what matters most. With the new Dream Duo with Cam 2, you can track Baby’s Sleep Quality Indicators (like their heart rate and average oxygen level), watch and save video clips when sound, motion, or crying occurs, and time Baby’s next nap perfectly with Predictive Sleep Technology. Plus, you’ll be able to stream HD video to your mobile device so you can feel like you’re there from anywhere.
**Disclaimer: Please follow the advice of your doctor and stay up to date with recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics.