• Safe & Effective
  • Kind & Caring
  • Exceeding Expectation
Safer Sleep

Safer sleep

Getting to know your baby

Keeping your baby close to you day and night will help you to get to know your baby and learn to recognise when your baby needs you for feeding, changing, love and attention.

Responding to baby’s needs will help you to build a strong, loving relationship with your baby, giving them the best start in life and helping them to grow up happy and confident.

The Baby Friendly Initiative’s Building a Happy Baby leaflet (PDF, 498Kb) offers advice and information for parents on getting to know their baby and setting up the foundations for a close and loving relationship.

Safer for baby

Keeping baby in the same room as an adult, day and night, is safer for your baby too.

The Lullaby Trust recommends placing your baby on their back to sleep, in a separate cot or Moses basket in the same room as you for the first 6 months, as well as breastfeeding your baby, to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

The Lullaby Trust also recommend that you:
  • Don't smoke during pregnancy or breastfeeding, and don't let anyone smoke in the same room as your baby
  • Don't share a bed with your baby if you have been drinking alcohol, if you take drugs, or you're a smoker
  • Never sleep with your baby on a sofa or armchair
  • Don't let your baby get too hot or cold. Use a room thermometer if you can and choose lighter bedding and clothing in warm or hot weather
  • Keep your baby's head uncovered. Their blanket should be tucked in no higher than their shoulders
  • Place your baby in the "feet to foot" position, with their feet at the end of the cot or moses basket

Visit The Lullaby Trust’s Safer Sleep Advice webpage for more details.

The UNICEF UK Caring For Your Baby At Night - A Guide For Parents (PDF, 598Kb) contains valuable information for breast and bottle feeding parents on safe sleeping, covering a range of topics including getting some rest, night feeding, safe sleeping environments and helping baby to settle. 

Normal infant sleep

The Baby Sleep Info Source (BASIS) provides information about normal infant sleep based upon the latest UK and world-wide research, for parents who wish to make informed choices about infant sleep and night-time care or health professionals who wish to share evidence-based information with parents about infant sleep.

Their website includes information about how baby’s sleep, sleep information factsheets, an infant sleep app and resources for practioners.

If you have any queries about Safe Sleep for your baby speak to your midwife or health visitor.

A Teaching Trust of the University of Birmingham