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New Cot Death Awareness Campaign Hits Hard

The Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths has launched a powerful short film to get the important message of safe sleeping to new parents

Posted: 22 December 2008
by Laura Lee Davies

The Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths (FSID) has launched a powerful new video clip to encourage new parents to be extra careful about observing the best rules around safe sleeping for their new baby.

Pain: FSID
The new viral is designed to encourage young mums to find out more about how they can keep their baby safe when napping or sleeping - day or night. The aim is to encourage people to forward the link to the film to friends and family, to get the message of 'cot death' and the importance of being safe sleep aware out to as many people as possible.
Having teamed up with advertising agency JWT, the FSID have put together a very simple, short film of women in labour, in pain. However, the end message is very clear: nothing is as painful as losing a baby.

To view the film, click here.

Video clip aimed at young mums
The purpose of putting together something as accessible as a viral like this, is to reach those younger mums who might often miss more conventional leaflets or baby classes where the message of safe sleeping is underlined.
Every year in the UK, over 300 babies who do not appear to have any particular health problems, will die suddenly and unexpectedly. The FSID are focussing especially on young mums because research shows that women under 20 years old are SIX TIMES more likely to suffer the tragedy of losing their child this way, than older mothers.

About FSID
The Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths is a charity which funds research into the causes of cot death or sudden infant death syndrome.
They are also a valuable support for parents who have suffered the tragedy of losing their baby.
The FSID also acts as a way of getting the message of best care and best support out to the public and to health professionals.
For advice, information and for more about their work, go to

Safe sleeping: the essentials
Whatever you choose to do, it’s good to be aware of the guidelines laid down by the FSID for new parents.
  • Cut smoking in pregnancy - fathers too!
  • Don't let anyone smoke in the same room as your baby
  • Don't let your baby get too hot
  • Keep your baby’s head uncovered - place your baby with their feet to the foot of the cot, to prevent wriggling down under the covers
  • If your baby is unwell, seek medical advice promptly.
  • The safest place for your baby to sleep for the first six months is in a cot, in your room
  • Never sleep with a baby on a sofa or armchair
  • Never share a bed with your baby if you or your partner: are smokers (even if you don't smoke in bed or at home); feel very tired; have been drinking alcohol; take medication or drugs that make you drowsy; OR if your baby was born premature or small at birth, or is less than three months old.

There is also a risk that you might roll over in your sleep and suffocate your baby, or that your baby could get caught between the wall and the bed, or could roll out of an adult bed and be injured.

Bedtime safety

  • Keep your baby's bedroom at 16-18 degrees C - as a rough guide, if you are comfortable in light clothing, it’s probably about right. Overheating is a risk factor

  • Don't use pillows - or a duvet until your baby is at least one (pillows can smother and duvets can overheat). Instead, use cotton cot blankets.

  • Don't give your baby a hot water bottle - or electric blanket

  • Don't let your baby fall asleep propped up on a cushion - on a sofa or armchair

  • Set your baby to sleep with his feet at the bottom of the cot - and his blankets or sheet tucked in so he can't wriggle further down, under the blankets during his sleep

  • Make sure your baby's mattress - is clean and dry and fits the cot snugly

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