'Co-Sleeping' Puts Babies at Risk of Death

Sharing bed or couch with an adult imperils infants: UK docs
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2009 9:38 AM CDT
'Co-Sleeping' Puts Babies at Risk of Death
Parents may be tempted to keep their new baby close to them in the big bed, but there's a reason cribs were invented.   (©abardwell)

Sleeping with an infant on a bed or sofa is dangerous for the baby, new research finds. The risk of unexpected infant death goes up for babies sleeping somewhere other than their cribs, especially for parents who smoke or who have been drinking. The study found that half of sudden infant deaths can be traced to bed sharing, BBC reports.

The head of the Royal College of Midwives criticized the report, saying, "It is a terrible tragedy for the parents when they suffer the sudden death of their child, so any research that sheds light on the potential causes is important. However, the situation around co-sleeping is complex, and blanket advice to avoid it is perhaps unhelpful to parents who may want to do it." (More babies stories.)

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