Renewed calls for sleep safety following death of SC baby

South Carolina News

GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – The death of an infant is under investigation after a baby is believed to have died while co-sleeping with the parents. Now child health advocates at Prisma’s Bradshaw Institute are working to remind parents about sleep safety.

According to the Greenville County Coroner’s Office, a two-and-a-half-month-old baby died early Friday morning. The report shows the baby had been sleeping between the parents at the time.

The mother said she found the infant cool to the touch with blood coming from his nose.
After an hour of CPR at a local emergency room, the baby was declared dead.

DHEC reports unsafe sleeping habits are one of the leading causes of death for infants in South Carolina.

Denise Wiklacz, Team Lead for Health Promotion at Prisma’s Bradshaw Institute said it’s important as a parent to remember the ABC’s.

The “A” is for ‘Alone.’

“All babies every time should be put to sleep alone and in a crib,” Wiklacz said. “And when we say alone, we mean nothing else in the crib. No bumpers, no stuffed animals, no blankets. Nothing else but the baby. They can have a pacifier, but the pacifier should not be connected to anything.”

She added the “B” stands for on their Backs, the “C” stands for Crib.

“And then when we say crib, we mean an approved crib for a baby or an infant with a firm mattress and a tight-fitting sheet,” said Wiklacz.

She said it’s important for expectant parents to learn the drill.

“A lot of well intentioned parents want to sleep holding their baby, and a lot of times what we see is babies will fall out of the parents arms,” Wiklacz explained. “And they could be lodged in-between the seat of the couch or the chair or the parent and suffocation can occur.”

Instead of co-sleeping, she suggests room sharing.

“I think that’s the mistake a lot of parents make is they think it’s a time to bond with the baby while they’re sleeping,” Wiklacz said. “But when they’re sleeping, they really need to be alone in their bed in their own cribs sleeping.

Wiklacz also suggests parents setting up timers when feeding their baby to get into a routine to prevent accidentally falling asleep while feeding their baby. The alarm would also serve as a reminder to put the baby back into the crib to sleep alone.

The Bradshaw Institute works with parents to provide safe sleeping tips, car seat safety instructions, and have diaper banks and other resources for parents in need.

To learn more about Prisma’s Bradshaw Institute, click here.

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