Pacifiers 'cut cot deaths'

Baby pacifiers can cut the risk of cot deaths by 90%, according to research published on Friday.

    Researchers say dummies greatly cut the risk of cot deaths

    Scientists in the US found that babies under a year old who used a pacifier, also known as a dummy, while they slept had a 90% reduced risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) compared with other babies.

    De-Kun Li, of the Health Management Organisation group Kaiser Permanente Northern California, said in a report published online by the British Medical Journal: "Use of a dummy during sleep was associated with a reduced risk of SIDS.

    "Our results also provide some evidence that use of a dummy may reduce the impact of other risk factors for SIDS, especially those related to adverse sleep conditions."

    Most cot deaths occur between two to four months of age and are more prevalent in boys than girls. The cause is unknown, but lying the baby down on its stomach, parental smoking and old mattresses, which may harbour toxic bacteria, have been cited as possible culprits.

    A campaign to encourage parents to put infants to sleep on their backs has led to a significant fall in cot deaths.

    Scientists from Kaiser Permanente and the National Institutes of Health questioned the mothers or carers of 185 infants who died of SIDS and 312 other infants of a similar age and race.

    Dr Li said: "The use of dummies may be an effective strategy for public health intervention."

    The American Academy of Paediatrics, which issued revised guidelines in October, recommends that babies are put to sleep only on their back and said pacifiers could be used to help prevent SIDS.

    SOURCE: Reuters


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    The 'risky business' of tracking Rwandan fugitive Felicien Kabuga

    The 'risky business' of tracking Rwandan fugitive Felicien Kabuga

    The former chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda discusses the hunt for genocide suspects.

    Doctors race to understand new illness afflicting children

    Doctors race to understand new illness afflicting children

    More and more cases of a Kawasaki-like disease, called PMIS or MIS-C, reported among children exposed to coronavirus.

    Lockdown life in New Zealand, the bubble that 'beat' coronavirus

    Lockdown life in New Zealand, the bubble that 'beat' coronavirus

    What life in one neighbourhood says about New Zealand's bold, and seemingly successful, plan to eliminate COVID-19.