The American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended since 1992 that infants be placed to sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Since that time, the frequency of prone sleeping has decreased from >70% to ∼20% of US infants, and the SIDS rate has decreased by >40%. However, SIDS remains the highest cause of infant death beyond the neonatal period, and there are still several potentially modifiable risk factors. Although some of these factors have been known for many years (eg, maternal smoking), the importance of other hazards, such as soft bedding and covered airways, has been demonstrated only recently. The present statement is intended to review the evidence about prone sleeping and other risk factors and to make recommendations about strategies that may be effective for further reducing the risk of SIDS. This statement is intended to consolidate and supplant previous statements made by this Task Force.
- Copyright © 2000 American Academy of Pediatrics