Co-sleeping means that babies and parents sleep together in the same bed. It’s sometimes called bed-sharing. You may like the idea of cuddling with your baby at bedtime. But co-sleeping may put your baby at risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and other dangers, like suffocation. SIDS is the unexplained death of a baby while sleeping.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) warns that babies should not co-sleep with anyone.
During co-sleeping, a baby can be hurt by:
About half of all SIDS deaths happen when a baby shares a bed, sofa or sofa chair with another person. To lower your baby’s chances of SIDS, don’t co-sleep if:
Co-sleepers are baby beds or bassinettes that attach to your bed. Some makers of co-sleepers say they’re safe, but the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) doesn’t have any safety standards for co-sleepers. AAP doesn’t recommend using these products.
Some parents don’t sleep well with a baby in their bed. Babies who co-sleep may have trouble falling asleep by themselves. This can be a problem at naptime or at night when parents aren’t yet in bed.
With your baby close by, you can easily feed her and check on her during the night. Bring your baby into your bed for breastfeeding or soothing. But put her back in her own bed before you fall asleep.
How can you keep your baby safe while she sleeps?
Use these tips to help keep your baby safe during sleep.
Last reviewed March 2012
About 1 in 5 babies develops colic - usually between 1 and 4 months of age. They cry constantly, often extending or pulling up their legs or passing gas. Sometimes their tummies are enlarged with air and gas from crying. There's no one cause of colic, but there are many different ways to ease your baby's discomfort. One way is to walk her in a soft-sided baby carrier that you strap to the front of your body. You can also try laying her tummy-down across your knees and gently rubbing her back. The pressure against her tummy may relieve her discomfort. Breastfeeding moms can ask their baby's health care providers about a change in food choices or eliminating specific foods that may cause your baby's colic. Keep in mind that colic usually disappears by 4 months of age, no matter what treatments you try.
If your child is younger than 3 years, taking a rectal temperature gives the best reading. Here's how:
Your baby's bowel moments depend on her age and eating habits. Every baby is different. Some babies have a bowel movement right after each feeding. Others have it only once a day. It also is normal that a breastfed baby (3 to 6 weeks of age) passes stools only once a week. Formula fed babies should pass stools at least once a day. If your baby is having irregular bowel movements but her stools are soft (no firmer than peanut butter), this isn't a sign of constipation. But if your baby's stools are firm, she seems fussy or cries when having a bowel movement, she might be constipated. Talk to your baby's health care provider.