Newborns and young infants can't lift their heads well, so can get stuck in a position
that blocks their breathing, called smothering or suffocation. Young children have
better head control, but still have a small risk of smothering too.
How Can I Protect My Child From Suffocation?
Always lay an infant down on their back on a firm mattress.
Never place an infant on soft surfaces such as comforter, fluffy rug, or soft
Never put an infant down on a mattress covered with plastic.
Keep blankets, pillows, stuffed animals, or plush toys out of the
Don’t use crib bumpers.
Make sure your baby's crib
mattress is the right size and fits snugly in the crib. This keeps a baby from
getting caught between the mattress and the crib sides.
Make sure your baby's crib sheet fits snugly on the mattress to keep it from coming
off and getting wrapped around your baby's head. You also can buy crib sheet holders
to keep sheets in place.
Don't put an infant to sleep on an adult bed, couch, or other soft surface.
Infants should not share a bed with other children or adults. Bed-sharing can
cause a baby to be smothered.
Tie several knots in plastic shopping bags and dry-cleaning bags before throwing
them out or recycling.
Keep all plastic bags, including garbage bags and sandwich-style plastic bags,
out of the reach of young kids.
Keep balloons, including deflated balloons, out of reach. Quickly clean up and
safely throw away pieces of broken balloons.
If you're expecting a baby or already have a child, it's a good idea to:
Childproof your home.
Get down on your hands and knees in every room of your home for a kid's-eye view.
Remove or lock away items that could be dangerous.