Safe Sleep for Infants

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and suffocation are major safety concerns for newborns
Baby crib is empty. No blankets, pillows, bumpers, loose or soft items. Baby sleeping on their back. Baby's crib in close, in your room.
Each year, about 3,500 infants die from sleep-related deaths in the United States.

The Texas Department of State Health Services Safe Infant Sleep Campaign recommends following these steps for the first year of your baby’s life to help you and your baby sleep safe and sound.

  • Place your baby on their back to sleep for every sleep, including naps.
  • Use a firm, flat mattress (not inclined) with a well-fitted sheet.
  • Feed your baby only breastmilk for six months and continue breastfeeding for at least two years.
  • Share your room with your baby. Keep baby near your bed on their own safety-approved sleep surface like a crib, bassinet, or portable play yard with no other people or pets.
  • Keep everything out of your baby’s sleep area – no blankets, pillows, quilts, bumper pads, crib liners, sitting devices, toys, or other objects.
  • Avoid placing your baby to sleep on a couch, armchair, or seating device like a swing, baby seat, or car safety seat (except when in a car).

Bedding for Infants

Mattresses made for adults are too soft and have blankets and pillows that can lead to suffocation. You rolling over on your baby is not the only concern; if your baby goes face down on the mattress or blankets, it can quickly become an emergency situation.

Having a baby on their back to sleep in a crib with no toys blankets or pillows is the safest method for bedtime.

Having a fitted sheet and, if needed, a wearable blanket or sleep sack that zips or snaps, but allows your baby to not be “wrapped” in a blanket, is safest.

Do not sleep with your baby in the same bedFalling asleep with your baby increases the risk of death.

Learn MoreAbout Safe Sleep

Swaddling

When a baby is swaddled (wrapped) in a blanket, the moment they get an arm or leg free, they are at risk for suffocating themselves in the blanket.

If you do choose to swaddle, it needs to be fully supervised; your baby should not be left alone while swaddled.

Safe Kids Worldwide

Safe Kids Worldwide logo
Safe Kids Worldwide® is a nonprofit organization working to help families and communities keep kids safe from injuries. Most people are surprised to learn preventable injuries are the #1 killer of kids in the United States. Throughout the world, almost one million children die of an injury each year, and almost every one of these tragedies is preventable.

VisitSafe Kids Worldwide

Shaken Baby Syndrome

Shaken baby syndrome occurs when someone “shakes” the baby until there is potential brain damage or worse.

Always be gentleNever shake or use forceful movement with you baby as it can easily cause harm or death.

Safety Hazards

Food choking accidents result in over 12,000 visits to the hospital every year.75% of all choking deaths occur in children under three years of age.

Childproofing Your Home

Be prepared
  • Watch children at all times
  • Learn first aid, CPR, and age-appropriate Heimlich manuever
  • Keep important phone numbers close by (doctors, police, fire, and work and cell phone numbers for family and neighbors
Beware of high-risk areas for your child
  • Water: Bathrooms, kitchen, pools and hot tubs
  • Heat or Flame: In the kitchen, fireplace, or barbeque grill
  • Toxic Substances: Under the kitchen sink, in the garage or shed, and wherever medicines are stored
  • Potential for Fall: Stairs, slippery floors, high windows, or tipping furniture

Learn More


Drowning Hazards

Drowning is a leading cause of death for children

In addition to pools and lakes, there are many household areas that are dangerous and even more likely to cause childhood drowning accidents.

Areas such as toilets, bathtubs, and fluids in five-gallon buckets can lead to a hospital visit or worse for a young child. To learn more about the dangerous areas and how to keep your child safe, watch the video.


Drowning facts
  • For infants under a year old, most drownings occur in bathtubs
  • Children 4 and under are at the highest risk for drowning
  • Non-fatal drownings can result in long-term health problems

Electric Shock Hazards

Image

Electric shock kills more than 1,000 infants in the United States each year.

These deaths are often caused by a child chewing on cords, placing their fingers in outlets, pulling on cords in walls, and inserting the other end of a plugged-in phone charger into their mouths. Read about ways you can avoid electric shock and what to do if it ever happens.


Learn MoreAbout Electric Shock