The tendency of bed sharing or co-sleeping with infants have witnessed a significant rise in the US over a nearly 20-year-period.
The government has cautioned the parents against avoiding sleeping with infant issuing public health messages that shows link between bed sharing and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
The scientists have found the link between bed sharing and sudden infant death syndrome. Several studies have shown this sleep practice increases an infant’s risk of dying from SIDS.
The government report shows a troubling trend where the percentage of US babies sleeping with parents or another child more than doubled since the early 1990s.
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is marked by the sudden death of an infant that is not predicted by medical history and remains unexplained after a thorough forensic autopsy and detailed death scene investigation. As infants are at the highest risk for SIDS during sleep, it is sometimes referred to as cot death or crib death. Typically the infant is found dead after having been put to bed, and exhibits no signs of having suffered.
The scientists carried a survey on adults mostly mothers in 2010 and found 14 percent of them usually shared a bed with their infants. The survey showed the infant either shared bed with parents or another child, instead of sleeping alone in a crib.
The figures were just double the number recorded in 1993. Notably, the increase was mainly witnessed among blacks and Hispanics. The practice had leveled off among whites after an increase in the 1990s.
Bed-sharing was most common among blacks; nearly one-third of those surveyed said their infants usually shared a bed.
“That’s a concern because we know that blacks are at increased risk for SIDS,” said study co-author Marian Willinger of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which funded the study. “We want to eliminate as many risks as we can for everybody, particularly in that population where we’re seeing increasing disparities.”
SIDS refers to deaths in the first year of life that remain unexplained after autopsies and
The study was published online Monday in JAMA Pediatrics.