When the sun goes down and the stars begin to appear, many questions arise regarding a baby’s bedtime regime, but one question lingers in the minds of every parent and that is if their baby can sleep with a blanket. Infants do not have the dexterity to remove objects such as a blanket away from their face, therefore giving them one to keep them warm as they sleep can pose a major hazard to the extent of being life threatening.
As new parents, you’ll do just about anything to get your baby to go to bed at night without having to wake up crying every other hour. And one of the best ways to keep your baby in deep slumber is by making their sleeping environment as warm and as comfortable as possible. But, what you really should be looking into is the safety of your child’s crib and everything that is placed in the crib with your baby when your newborn goes to bed.
Mothers and fathers need their sleep too, so it’s quite impossible to watch over your child the whole time your baby is asleep however if you enjoy giving your infant a blanket and several stuffed animals for accompaniment, that’s what you’ll most likely find yourself doing. This is why it is crucial for all parents of newborn babies to be aware of the hidden dangers of blankets and other bedtime related materials. You might have thought it was okay to wrap your baby in a sea of covers, but just how safe are babies with blankets when they sleep?
Can I Give My Baby a Blanket to Sleep With? Answer: No.
Although giving your baby a blanket during cold nights may seem like the proper thing to do, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends parents to avoid allowing their babies to sleep with a blanket until they reach the age of 12 months. Blankets are known to have been the cause of SIDS or suffocation related mishaps in infants under the age of one. By the time your baby reaches 12 months old, they will have the capacity of mobility, so any blanket or toy that may be constricting the airflow to your baby can actually be removed by them themselves.
What is SIDS?
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome or SIDS is the unexpected death of a child under the age of one. It isn’t exactly clear just what causes SIDS, however sleep has been closely associated with the condition. Most deaths from SIDS usually occur in healthy babies between the ages of 2 to 4 months old. Studies show that there are more deaths reported during the fall and winter season with 60% of the babies being male.
To prevent you and your family from every having to experience SIDS, extra precautionary measures such as forbidding your infant to sleep with a blanket until they are a year old, should be strictly enforced.
How Can I Keep My Baby Warm at Night If I don’t Use A Blanket?
The best way to keep your infant warm during colder nights is to basically dress your child in thicker clothing. There are blanket sleepers available on the market that are made up of a heavy fleece material that should provide your baby enough warmth throughout the night. It can easily be worn over a lighter garment such as a cotton body suit also known as a baby “onesie”.
You can also change the temperature of your baby’s room by installing a heater. Close all windows and doors where cool drafts may enter.
How Can I Make Sleeping With a Blanket Safe For My Child if There Are No Other Available Options?
If it is completely necessary your child sleep with a blanket, make sure that you purchase a blanket made out of 100% cotton and nothing else. Cotton is fairly light and breathable therefore if the blanket does ever cover your child’s face, there can still be a reasonable amount of airflow through the sheets.
It is important that you not just place the blanket on top of your baby, but tuck the blankets securely on the sides of the bed to prevent it from moving as your child moves.