Spreading awareness about Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) ---October is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Awareness Month.

The goal is to spread awareness to local communities because nearly 3,400 infants die suddenly and unexpectedly each year in the United States.

SIDS is the leading cause of death among infants between 1 month to 1 year of age, sometimes even younger than 1 month.

Factors that can be controlled to help reduce the risk of SIDS include always placing your baby on his or her back to sleep.

"If they are laying on their back, if they do regurgitate a little bit of milk that milk is just likely to be swallowed right back down by the esophagus. Whereas if they are on their belly the airway is now on the bottom so if they do regurgitate a little milk it's more likely to go down into that airway and be aspirated and they can choke," said Dr. Laura Forster, a pediatrician.

After doctors started recommending babies be placed on their backs to sleep, there was a 50% reduction in the incidence of SIDS.

Dr. Forster says if your child is able to roll onto their tummy they are past the age when they are at a peak risk for SIDS and they are strong enough to get out of trouble.

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