It was a common practice in many places, not that long ago, to place a baby in almost any position when it was time to sleep. Some parents would place their baby on their side, using pillows to keep them from rolling one direction or another. In some instances, parents would place a baby on their belly to sleep. Recent research, however, has shown that the best position that you should place your baby in to sleep is flat on your baby’s back.
The main reason that you should place your baby on his or her back to sleep is that sleeping on his or her back will reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). While we don’t know exactly what causes SIDS or how it happens, research has demonstrated very firmly that placing your baby on his or her back to sleep does reduce the risk of SIDS. Along with placing your baby on his or her back to sleep, you should be certain that you are placing your baby to sleep on a firm mattress with a tight-fitting sheet.
In addition to placing our baby on his or her back to sleep, it is also recommended that you place a blanket tucked around your baby. Many parents prefer to use a swaddling blanket or a safety blanket. A swaddling blanket or a safety blanket will help to insure that your baby does not roll during the night, and will also keep your baby from grabbing onto things that could potentially harm your baby while he or she sleeps.
There is one other thing to keep in mind when putting your baby to bed. Research also shows that using a pacifier may help to reduce the risk of SIDS, as well. While experts aren’t certain why it is that a pacifier may reduce the risks of SIDS, the research is nevertheless very compelling. Placing your baby in bed, swaddled, on his or her back, and providing him or her a pacifier, is the best way to put your baby to bed.