SIDS can strike seated babies

By Tom Nordlie • Published: August 25th, 2008
Category: Health in a Heartbeat

Having a baby means having worries.

One of the worst is sudden infant death syndrome, a mysterious condition that causes babies less than one year old to die in their sleep.

Commonly known as SIDS, it strikes about twenty-five-hundred children annually in the U-S.

SIDS is generally associated with babies lying on their stomachs or sides.

But a study published recently in the journal Archives of Disease in Childhood suggests SIDS strikes infants who sleep sitting up.

In it, researchers examined records from all sudden, unexpected infant deaths during a ten-year period in Quebec.

They began with more than five-hundred cases.

Of those, nearly four-hundred deaths were blamed on SIDS. Eight of those babies were seated when they died.

Most of them were in car seats. One was in an infant seat, another in a carrying sling.

Five of the eight babies were less than one month old when they died.

That’s more than sixty percent.

Previous studies have shown that the first month of life is when babies are most likely to suffer certain breathing-related problems.

There’s also a previous study showing young children can experience reduced oxygen levels when placed in car seats.

The researchers stopped short of saying how much time infants should spend sitting upright in furniture or other devices.

Nonetheless, it seems wise to minimize those situations during the first month, especially if the baby might fall asleep.

That might cause a little inconvenience.

But for parents, inconvenience beats worry every time.