The Minnesota Department of Health is encouraging parents to talk to caregivers, whether it be a grandparent or a babysitter, about the ABCs of safe sleep.
Minnesota data consistently has shown that unsafe sleep environments account for nearly all unexpected infant deaths in Minnesota. Every year, about 50 or more Minnesota babies die suddenly and unexpectedly, and nearly all those tragic deaths happen in an unsafe sleep environment. State health department analysis of the 100 sudden unexpected infant deaths in 2018 and 2019 found that 93% or 93 were sleep-related and happened in unsafe sleep environments, according to preliminary data.
A key takeaway for parents and other caregivers is to know the ABCs of safe sleep:
- ALONE: Infants should always sleep or nap alone.
- BACK: Always put a baby on their back to sleep or nap.
- CRIB: Babies should always sleep or nap in their own safety-approved crib or play yard without blankets or pillows.
Recognizing the importance of building awareness around this public health issue, Governor Tim Walz proclaimed November 14-20 Infant Safe Sleep Week.