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Keep her on the back WITHOUT a baby sleep positioner

A baby sleep positioner or baby wedge forms a potentially fatal risk so do not use any, ever. The CPSC and FDA warn that babies have died after getting stuck between the wedges and the crib side.

Let's find out why that is + learn how to keep baby on her back without a dangerous holder in the crib.

Along with all other crib safety and SIDS guidelines, we should always put baby on her back to sleep: it's the single safe baby sleeping position. Since parents have been advised to keep baby on the back at the end oBaby Sleep Positionerf the 1980's, SIDS rates have decreased a lot (!). And it still the standard recommended way to sleep.

But, it is not a good idea to try and keep her on the back with a baby sleep positioner.

You probably have seen these rolls or baby wedges in different shapes and sizes.

Our mothers and grandmothers used them (or a rolled-up towel) to keep us sleeping ... on the side (which was sometimes still recommended in those days). You can still buy them or even find them included with an in-bed mini cosleeper. (By the way these cosleepers themselves are definitely OK to use, but just don't use the wedges, they are detachable).

The CPSC baby sleep positioner report states that several babies have suffocated after rolling within theInfant Sleep Positioner Hazard infant sleep positioner and/or getting stuck between one of the wedges and the crib side. A recall is not mentioned but  they do warn to stop using any sleep positioner:

"To date, there is no scientifically sound evidence that infant sleep positioners prevent SIDS,” said Dr. Joshua Sharfstein, FDA Principal Deputy Commissioner and a pediatrician. “

We want to make sure parents, health care professionals, and childcare providers understand the potential risk of suffocation and stop using infant sleep positioners."


So there is no way we can take this risk. Still you do want to find a way to keep your baby safely on her back.

What if baby rolls over onto her tummy while asleep?

First of all, when baby is put to sleep on her back in an empty crib (as recommended) and then rolls over, the risk of suffocating is lower than with a baby sleep positioner in the crib. Exactly because there is no extra material to get stuck in.

So putting down on the back in an empty crib is crucial. Then to help avoid rolling over onto her tummy, you can use a sleeping bag.

A well-adapted, right-size baby sleeping bag (also called wearable blanket) is the best sleep aid to keep baby on her back, safely. That is because it makes rolling over just a little bit more difficult. So until she is really strong and mobile enough to roll over when in a sleep sack, it really helps to keep her on the back. Once she's stronger, the risk also decreases (see right below).

Following the SIDS prevention guidelines, you will be near your baby (supervise closely or sleep in the same room) to monitor carefully. That is especially in those crucial first 4-6 months, either with baby in her own crib or cosleeping safely.

This way you automatically monitor your baby and can roll her over when necessary. But once she is so agile and strong to roll back and forth easily, and you are confident that she will also be able to do it while asleep, the risk from being on her tummy decreases significantly.

Use the baby monitor review to find the right monitor