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Experts unite to warn parents of bedsharing dangers - new advice from FSID

(201 Posts)
Caz10 Wed 13-May-09 20:42:12

I apologise whole-heartedly if this topic upsets anyone, I really don't mean to. I am just curious to as to people's views on this.

I get the FSID email and this was their headline article.

I understand all the guidelines re if you are a smoker, been drinking etc, but this seeems to advise no co-sleeping AT ALL. I co-slept with my dd (now 18mths) quite a lot - I thought I would do so again if we had a dc2 - but that piece worries me a bit?

Just wondering what others thought?

It seems to contradict the advice coming from eg Unicef

Ninkynork Wed 13-May-09 20:48:37

How do they explain the fact that in countries such as Japan where co-sleeping is the norm SIDS isn't an issue? It's a long time since I read, "Three in a Bed" and I was demented from tiredness at the time not having tried it so I may be wrong...

I'm guessing that they have decided that not all people take the warnings that they should only co-sleep if they dont drink, smoke etc and therefore it's easier just to say no-one should co-sleep.

pooter Wed 13-May-09 20:49:17

Im really angry about it, as it give a completely biased view of cosleeping. A child is more likely to die of SIDS if it is not breastfed. Cosleeping increases the likelihood of BF being successful.

does the research state whether it included sleeping on a sofa/people who had been smoking or drinking in their statistics?

Most babies who die of SIDS do so alone in their cots. Personally i feel that cosleeping is necessary for me to be able to respond immediately to my child's needs. Being so close reassures me that he is OK. Even when he was in a moses basket in our room i couldnt sleep as i was too worried he would stop breathing and i wouldnt know about it.

Its a horrible dilemma, and i know i felt so guilty after my HV gave me a leaflet from FSIDs against co-sleeping, but i am choosing to do what feels right for us, and i honestly believe it is the safest thing, if done with all the usual precautions. In countries where cosleeping is the norm, they do not have SIDS as a phenomenon.

nickytwotimes Wed 13-May-09 20:49:28

I didn't co-sleep as I was scared of hurting ds. I'd be the same if we ever have another child. However, nodding off when you are bfing isn't always avoidable, is it?
He is nearly 3 now and I have shared the bed with him a few times, btu I still worry about it.

There is a small risk with co-sleeping and people should be aware of it.

traceybath Wed 13-May-09 20:49:54

Well my two have ended up in my bed with me when i was bf them - not necessarily intentionally but because i fell asleep whilst laying down feeding them.

With ds2 i had a bedside cot which was fab and will be used for dc3 - due this summer.

I understood that a lot of it was down to how you slept with your baby and that bf mums tend to hold baby in a slightly different way.

Clearly you have to be sensible re. duvets and pillows and not turning your back on the baby.

But i've done it and will do it again.

MarlaSinger Wed 13-May-09 20:52:29

I think it is a bit alarmist, though the figures are very sad... I wonder what the truth of each case is regarding alcohol/smoking/exhaustion?

I'd like to see more emphasis on co-sleeping safely.

I did not particularly want or plan to co-sleep but I would not have got breastfeeding established without it, or at least got breastfeeding established and stayed sane - and even then only just.

BillSilverFoxBuchanan Wed 13-May-09 20:52:58

It's a very mis-leading article. It doesn't state whether the x number of deaths from sharing a bed were cases where the parents had been following the advice and taking adequate precautions.

I think that if they really want to report on this in such a biased manner they should at least be so polite as to present all the facts.

BCLass Wed 13-May-09 20:53:39

I want to see stats that show that safe bedsharing - so no drink/drugs/smoke/overtiredness, no duvets pillows and no sofas etc is actually implicated in SIDS - because I just do not believe that it is, and never will until someone shows me some actual proper stat based evidence!

Agree about Japan. Why no SIDS and huge bed sharing culture??

WHen they peddle unsubstantiated bollocks like this, why should I believe anything else they say? It's counter productive.

"I want to see stats that show that safe bedsharing - so no drink/drugs/smoke/overtiredness, no duvets pillows and no sofas etc is actually implicated in SIDS - because I just do not believe that it is, and never will until someone shows me some actual proper stat based evidence!"

You will never have that as people will not admit to drinking/smoking/etc when faced with their dead child.

InternationalFlight Wed 13-May-09 20:56:37

Surely thefact a lot of children were in their parents' beds just means that lots of people co sleep?

It's probably not quite the same as saying '99% of the children werte wearing a nappy, stop using nappies as they are obviously dangerous' but can anyone explain what evidence they have that this is an actual factor in increasing the risk?

TheCrackFox Wed 13-May-09 20:56:58

I co-slept with DS1 from around about 6 months for a year IIRC.

His sleeping was so horrendous that if I hadn't started co-sleeping I think I would have throttled him (I am not exaggerating, I was at the end of my tether). He went from waking up every hour (or more)to sleeping through the night and stopped me from having a nervous breakdown.

FearOfThePig Wed 13-May-09 20:57:31

Oh god, I don't want to read this, I'm currently co-sleeping with my 7 week old ds. I co slept with both my other dc, and can't imagine doing it another way. It's the only way of getting ANY sleep ime.
If co-sleeping safely involves not co-sleeping if you are exhausted, then I am not doing it safely.

Grrrr. Shall I read it or give it a miss?

chegirl Wed 13-May-09 20:58:03

It does seem to be the norm now to give blanket (scuse the pun) advice.

No alchohol in pregnancy, not because the odd glass is dangerous, because some women may not know when to stop.

Weaning at 6 mths just incase anyone give their baby chips at 3 weeks (I know this is open to debate but you know what I mean)

So no sleeping at all with any baby by any parents just incase those who smoke, are on medication, are very overweight etc dont listen to the specific advice?

I dont automatically discount advice. I like to listen and digest and think about things carefully. I think there is a danger that a lot more people will simply ignore advice because they will think its all over the top. Too much erring on the side of caution may have the opposite affect from the one desired.

I do know a baby who died because mum ignored the advice on co-sleeping. Its heartbreaking.

sherby Wed 13-May-09 21:00:58

We are hardcore co-sleepers in our house, both DC have slept in with us, DD until she was 3 DS is still in with us 20mths.

I was really dismaid to see this advice coming from FSID. As I understand it, smoking more than anything else is implicated in cot death, how much of this research was people following the rules that most people who co-sleep follow.

(This is coming from a smoker btw)

pooter Wed 13-May-09 21:07:48

the FSIDS recommend putting babies to sleep with a dummy - why have a dummy when you can have a real nipple?

I just tried to find the original research by Dr Marta Cohen, to look at the study sample, but it is nowhere to be found...

I wish mums and families weren't treated as idiots. We CAN understand the different permutations of co-sleeping safely. ggrrr. angry and sad for all those who have lost a baby to SIDS, safely cosleeping, and now feel wretchedly guilty.

"I wish mums and families weren't treated as idiots"

The problem is some mums ARE idiots, or to put it in a kinder way, do not have the education or resources to realise that they shouldn't drink and co-sleep etc.

pooter Wed 13-May-09 21:13:16


A blanket order helps no-one.

They already do say that, either there are women out there who dont take any notice or co-sleeping does cause SIDS.

pooter Wed 13-May-09 21:22:46

So why will the women who take no notice of the advice at the moment bother with this piece? I think that if women are made to be worried about co-sleeping, they are more likely to try to stay awake whilst feeding and end up falling asleep with their babies in unsafe conditions. If people plan to cosleep they can ensure the environment is safe.

Caz10 Wed 13-May-09 21:27:30

I think libras theory is probably right, like the drinking advice they decided that not everyone would do it sensibly so just said "not at all".

I'd also like to know how many of the 31 were smokers or had been drinking.

Probably a stupid question - re the drinking - is it because you will accidently roll on the baby or similar? Or because your sleep will be so sound you may not respond in time? Because tbh when dd was younger and I got any sleep at all I was out like a light into a really heavy drugged feeling sleep - can't imagine I would have woken if she stopped breathing.

chegirl Wed 13-May-09 21:27:42

I agree with pooter the women who ignore the specific advice are certainly going to ignore this.

Even uneducated women can tell if something is over the top cant we they?

Because a DO NOT CO-SLEEP EVER message is easier to convey (and for some people to understand) than a DO NOT CO-SLEEP IF message.

"I agree with pooter the women who ignore the specific advice are certainly going to ignore this."

Not necessarily, I can imagine women going well I've only had 1 glass of wine that's nothing I am still ok to co-sleep. This message means that won't happen (well I presume that is the aim).

chegirl Wed 13-May-09 21:38:48

But isnt the advice already do not cosleep if you have had anything to drink?

Thats how I have understood it. I left school at 15 so am pretty uneducated.

This is not meant to start a row, I really do wonder if there if this will reach the people they intend it to.

Like the anti drink it pregnancy message. From the bits of the debate I heard, it was meant to reach problem drinkers. By saying NO drink at all it was hoped the message would get through. But would a problem drinker take notice?

I worry that the important and relevant information will be diluted by the blanketness (I know thats not a real word) of the message.

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