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High Point Regional Health System to Give Safe Sleep Onesies to All Babies Born in October

9/29/2008

High Point Regional Health System and the North Carolina Healthy Start Foundation will partner to give onesies(baby garments) and safe sleeping education to every baby born at the hospital in October for National Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Awareness Month.

“Safe sleep education, even before a baby is born is crucial,” said Angie Pendergrass, RN, patient care coordinator for Women’s Health and a prenatal class educator. “We are very excited that new parents will leave our hospital with information to help their babies sleep safely once they are home.”

There are many causes of infant death across North Carolina. From 2003-2007, 288 babies died in Guilford County, according to the NC State Center for Health Statistics. SIDS is one of the leading causes of infant death. In 2007 alone, 98 babies in North Carolina died of SIDS.

In addition to SIDS deaths, many babies die from accidental suffocation and strangulation. Many of these preventable deaths are related to excess bedding and parents sleeping with their babies, according to the North Carolina Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

To help teach parents about the safest ways for their babies to sleep, the North Carolina Healthy Start Foundation, which coordinates the NC Back to Sleep campaign in collaboration with the NC Division of Public Health, will send onesies to the hospital for the anticipated births in October. A bilingual (Spanish/English) fact sheet with tips for safe sleep and additional educational materials will also be provided.

Safe sleep tips for new parents include:

Put your baby on the back to sleep for naps and at night

Use a firm mattress for baby’s crib

Keep pillows, comforters and soft blankets, stuffed animals and toys out of the crib

Baby should sleep in his or her own crib

Do not let anyone smoke near your baby

Breastfeed your baby

Keep baby and the room temperature comfortable.

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