Sharp increase in infant sleeping deaths in Baltimore prompts health warning

BALTIMORE, MD – Public health officials in Baltimore are concerned about a recent spike in sleep-related infant deaths throughout the city.

Since December, 18 babies have died in their sleep in Baltimore.

“There has been a recent spike in sleep-related infant deaths in Baltimore City. You can help protect your babies, especially if they are sick, by making sure they sleep safe,” the Baltimore Police Department said today in a statement promoting the new initiative.

“There has been a sharp increase in sleep-related infant deaths this winter. Our hearts are broken for these families and we want to prevent these tragedies from happening again,” the Baltimore City Health Department said. “We know from the data that having respiratory symptoms increases the risks for sleep-related deaths because these babies are already having difficultly breathing, may be feeling sluggish, and may have a fever.”

The department said babies are at risk for death when they are suffering from a respiratory illness such as RSV. They suggest you make sure your sick baby is sleeping alone and on their backs.

“Babies sleep safest when they are alone, on their back in a crib, and in a smoke-free home. It is also important to make sure that your baby does not overheat,” the department said. “Your baby’s sleeping place should be clean and clear. No blankets, pillows, stuffed animals, Boppy, or crib bumpers. Just a tight-fitting sheet on a firm mattress.”

You can learn more here.

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