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Kristen's Homepage about SIDS

What is SIDS: Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (Otherwise known as SIDS), is a condition that occurs when infants stop breathing.  It can happen to infants under one year of age and even after a series of studies, continues to remain unexplained.  Researchers are still unsure whether SIDS is a condition due to cardiac or respiratory failure but they are learning about ways which are making it possible to prevent it. 13% of all infant deaths are due to SIDS and it has become one of the leading causes of death in infants. It usually occurs during the night when infants are sleeping on the stomachs and start having pauses in breathing but when they are that young, are unable to roll themselves over to breath easier. Many parents are unaware of the effects of SIDS and how serious of a condition it actually is, and because of this don't bother to put their infants to sleep on their backs because when their asleep on their back they tend to cry and wake more which can be irritating to parents so they prefer to place them to sleep on their stomachs and let them sleep throughout the night because they think it is perfectly safe. Many parents need to be educated about SIDS and realize how serious it actually is especially when their infant is 10 to 12 weeks old because this is when they are at the highest risk to die of SIDS. Unfortunately, some infants are more at risk for SIDS than others.  Some cases that will make an infant more at risk to SIDS are... 1. Low birth weight which can make an infant 5x-10x more likely. 2. Sleeping on the stomach opposed to the back. 3. Children with sleep apnea are 6% more at risk. 4.  African Americans and Eskimos are at more risk. 5. Twins and triplets, even if they are normal birth weight. 6. More common in children that have been exposed to cigarette smoke. 7.  Infants with siblings who have died of SIDS. Some tips in preventing SIDS for parents-to-be: 1.Do not use tobacco, cocaine, or heroin during pregnancy. (Try not to expose yourself to cigarette smoke either, when pregnant) 2.  Premature birth is a major factor of SIDS occurring so it is important to get regular check-ups, especially in the first 3 months of pregnancy, and also be sure to keep a healthy diet while pregnant. 3. Try to space your pregnancies at least a year apart because when there is a short interval between pregnancies, the SIDS rate becomes higher.   4.Also, teens who become pregnant are more at risk for their baby dieing from SIDS because the SIDS rate decreases for older mothers so it is important that if you already have one child and are a teen, to take precaution not to become pregnant again as a teenager, because SIDS is at its highest risk to teen mothers and the more babies the teenage mother has, the greater risk her infants will be at to die from SIDS.

Some Related Links About SIDS:

American SIds Insitute
Medline Plus health info.
Info. Extension Service - SIDS
Sudden Infant Death - What you can do to help.
Health Link
Parent's Place- SIDS