December 2010

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Avoid SIDS During Cold Weather

During wintry months, you may be tempted to wrap your baby in extra blankets and warm clothes before sleep. But take care. Over-bundling may cause infants to overheat, increasing their risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)—the third leading cause of infant death.

Most SIDS deaths happen when babies are between 2 and 4 months old. The exact causes of SIDS are still unknown, but several things can raise the risk (see the Wise Choice box).

Multiple layers of heavy clothing, heavy blankets and warm room temperatures are known to increase the risk of overheating. One sign that a baby is in danger of overheating is if he or she feels hot to the touch.

Take steps to avoid SIDS. Visit this NIH web site to learn more: www.nichd.nih.gov/sts/Pages/default.aspx.