SIDS Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

Meaning and definition
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or crib death is a syndrome marked by the sudden death of an infant that is unexpected by history and remains unexplained after a thorough forensic autopsy and a detailed death scene investigation. The term cot death is often used in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, India, South Africa and New Zealand. Typically the infant is found dead after having been put to bed, and exhibits no signs of having suffered.[1]

What causes SIDS?

Researchers have learned a great deal about SIDS in the past three decades, but they still have no definitive answer to that question.

Some experts believe that SIDS happens when a baby with an underlying abnormality (for example, a brain defect that affects breathing) sleeps tummy-down or is faced with an environmental challenge such as secondhand smoke during a critical period of growth. Others have published studies that contradict this hypothesis.

One study published in 2007 cites a connection between hearing ability and SIDS. Pediatric anesthesiologist Daniel D. Rubens at Seattle Children's Hospital studied the results of newborn hearing tests and found that babies who died of SIDS had consistently tested lower on the inner ear function of the right ear than babies who didn't die of SIDS. (Healthy infants typically test stronger in the right ear than the left; these results flipped those scores.) This study suggests new areas of research and points to the possibility of identifying babies who are at higher risk for SIDS.[2]


Reducing the Risk

A lack of answers is part of what makes sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) so frightening. SIDS is the leading cause of death among infants 1 month to 1 year old, and claims the lives of about 2,500 each year in the United States. It remains unpredictable despite years of research.

Even so, the risk of SIDS can be greatly reduced. First and foremost, infants younger than 1 year old should be placed on their backs to sleep — never face-down on their stomachs.[3]

Facts About SIDS

Doctors and nurses don’t know what causes SIDS, but they do know:

* SIDS is the leading cause of death in babies after one month of age.

* Most SIDS deaths occur in babies who are between 2 and 4 months old.

* More SIDS deaths occur in colder months.

* Babies placed to sleep on their stomachs are much more likely to die of SIDS than babies placed on their backs to sleep.

* African American babies are twice as likely to die of SIDS as white babies. American Indian babies are nearly three times more likely to die of SIDS than white babies.

Even though there is no way to know which babies might die of SIDS, there are some things that you can do to make your baby safer.[4]

Even though the specific cause (or causes) of SIDS remains unknown, scientific efforts have eliminated various misleading theories. We now know the following about SIDS:

* Apnea (cessation of breathing) of prematurity or apnea of infancy are felt to be clinical conditions that are distinct from SIDS. Infants with apnea may be managed with electronic monitors prescribed by doctors that track heart rate and respiratory activity. Apnea monitors will not prevent SIDS.

* SIDS is not predictable or preventable.

* Infants may experience episodes termed apparent life-threatening events (ALTEs). These are clinical events in which young infants may experience abrupt changes in breathing, color, or muscle tone. Common causes of ALTEs include respiratory infection, gastroesophageal reflux disease, or seizure. However, no definite scientific evidence links ALTEs as events that may lead to SIDS.

* SIDS is not caused by immunizations or bad parenting.

* SIDS is not contagious or hereditary.

* SIDS is not anyone's fault.[5]

This is me, backs on the sleeps. Experts say this is the safest way for baby like me to sleep to reduce SIDS

SIDS Sudden Infant Death Syndrome


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Notes:

[1] Wikipedia.org
[2] babycenter.com
[2] kidshealth.org
[3] keepkidshealthy.com
[4] emedicinehealth.com

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About Me:
I am a 296 days / 9 months, 3 weeks & 5 days old baby