Give babies a safe place to sleep during holiday travel

When traveling, babies should sleep alone in a crib, portable crib, bassinet or pack and play.

Baby sleeping

With the holidays upon us, many families will be traveling to celebrate the holidays. It is important to remember that at all times, home and during travel, parents and caregivers should be mindful of how their baby is sleeping.

In a recent press release, “Make sure babies have safe place to sleep when traveling for the holidays,” Nick Lyon, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) director, reminded families, “Whether you are going to the in-laws or staying in a hotel, make sure your baby has a safe place to sleep. Do not put babies on couches or inflatable mattress or in bed with siblings or other family members.”

MDHHS shares the following safe sleep recommendations:

  • Infants should sleep alone in a crib, portable crib, bassinet or play yard with only a firm mattress and a tightly fitted sheet. No pillows, blankets, comforters, stuffed animals or other soft things should be in the sleep area. Car seats and other sitting devices are not meant for routine sleep.
  • Always place baby on the back to sleep. Once baby can roll from back to stomach and from stomach to back, he or she can be allowed to remain in the sleep position that he or she chooses.
  • Avoid covering baby’s head or overheating. Dress the baby in as much or as little clothing as you are wearing. Instead of a blanket for sleeping, consider using a sleep sack, wearable blanket or footed sleeper to keep baby warm.

Sometimes, well-intended family members will encourage outdated safe sleep practices, such as putting baby to bed on their stomach to prevent choking. While this was at one time the recommendation, research has shown the safest option for baby is to be sleeping alone on their back and in a crib. These are called the ABC’s of Safe Sleep (Alone, on their Back, in a Crib). When leaving infants with caregivers, remind them of the ABC’s of Safe Sleep, and how your baby should be sleeping.

For more information on infant safe sleep, visit Michigan.gov/safesleep. For information on crib safety, contact the Consumer Product Safety Commission at 800-638-2772 or visit Cpsc.gov.

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