Pacifiers Reduce Risk of Crib Deaths, Study Finds
LONDON – Baby pacifiers can reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome, the leading cause of death in babies under a year old, according to new research published on Friday.
Scientists in the United States found babies who used a pacifier, also known as a “dummy,” while they slept had a 90 percent reduced risk of crib or cot death compared to other babies.
“Use of a dummy during sleep was associated with a reduced risk of SIDS,” Dr. De-Kun Li, of the Health Management Organization group Kaiser Permanente Northern California, said in a report published online by the British Medical Journal.
“Our results also provide some evidence that use of a dummy may reduce the impact of other risk factors for SIDS, especially those related to adverse sleep conditions.”
Most cot deaths occur between two to four months of age and are more prevalent in boys than girls. The cause is unknown but lying the baby down on its stomach, parental smoking and old mattresses which may harbor toxic bacteria, have been cited as possible culprits.
A campaign to encourage parents to put infants to sleep on their backs has led to a dramatic fall in cot deaths.
Scientists from Kaiser Permanente and the National Institutes of Health questioned the mothers or carers of 185 infants who died of SIDS and 312 other infants of a similar age and race.
“The use of dummies may be an effective strategy for public health intervention,” Li added.
The American Academy of Paediatrics, which issued revised guidelines in October, recommends that babies are put to sleep on their back only and said pacifiers could be used to help prevent SIDS.
Copyright 2005 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved., originally posted on December 8, 2005, at MSNBC.com
- Swaddling may reduce SIDS risk by preventing rolling to stomach
- New Study Finds Fathers Equally at Risk for Postpartum Depression
- Correct swaddling probably decreases SIDS risk
- SIDS: Studies indicate correct swaddling is likely to lower SIDS/suffocation risk
- Is there an increased risk of SIDS when having my baby swaddled?