Sleeping with a pillow is a common practice for children and adults. However, pillows are not always needed for babies, especially for newborn babies. Why is that?
A pillow may be one of baby equipment that parents will prepare before the birth of their baby. Many parents believe that the use of a pillow for a baby can perfect the shape of his/her head. In fact, the use of pillows for babies under one year old is not recommended because of the risk to their health.
Pillows and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome
In fact, newborn babies do not need a pillow to sleep. The use of pillows for newborn babies will increase the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Also, the use of pillows for newborn babies is feared to cover the mouth and nose when the babies fall asleep on their side. As a result, babies can become difficult to breathe and lead to death.
Apart from being associated with Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), there are also other dangers of using pillows on babies, namely:
- Pillows can lock the baby’s head position for a long time. This is because the baby cannot yet change the position of head and causes the head area covered by the pillow to overheat.
- The contents of the pillow, such as foam, kapok, or feathers, may be able to escape and choke the baby.
- If a U-shaped pillow is used, the baby will have difficulty flipping or turning his/her head to either side when he/she spits up or vomits. This risks the baby choking on his/her own vomit.
Read also: 6 Foods for Babies Who Experience Vomiting
Not Too Early to Give Baby A Pillow
To prevent your baby from getting Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), you should not give your baby a pillow while he/she is sleeping. Remember that babies who are still very small cannot do anything yet. So, if the pillow covers their face, they will not be able to help themselves. As a parent, you can consider giving a pillow to your beloved child when your child reaches one year of age.
Apart from not giving a pillow, there are several things that should be considered when putting a baby to sleep, namely:
- Lay the baby on his/her back and place him/her on a mattress that has a flat surface.
- Avoid giving the baby clothes and blankets which are too thick.
- Put your baby to sleep in a baby-only bed. Remember that babies are not recommended to sleep with other people.
- Do not place objects, such as blankets, dolls, and toys, on the crib.
- Do not put your baby to sleep on anything other than a mattress, such as a sofa.
- Do not swaddle your baby too tightly. Give a little space so that he/she can still move and breathe freely.
Well, that is an explanation about the reason why babies, especially newborn babies are not recommended to use pillows. If you still have any question regarding the use of baby pillows or want to know what baby equipment does not need to be purchased, do not hesitate to ask the doctor.