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Do NOT let your baby sleep in their car seat, it could be deadly.

Ever heard of Positional Asphyxia? I hadn't until yesterday.

Positional asphyxia is fatal respiratory arrest in which the ability to breath is compromised by the positioning of the body in relationship to its immediate surroundings.

So basically because your baby's airway is very soft, it can become compressed, making it hard to breathe if your baby's neck or body is in an abnormal position.

Positional asphyxia can happen anytime your baby’s neck isn't properly positioned and not being monitored.

Car seats are especially dangerous because of the amount of parents who leave their infants to sleep in them.

Car seats are made for cars, and even though it might be convenient to pop the car seat out while your baby is sleeping and leave them in there, it really can be very dangerous. It's not only parents that do it (I'm one of those parents that did it and didn't know any better) but some crèches tend to do it too.

The Journal of Paediatrics did a study on 47 infant deaths in car seats, slings, swings, bouncers and strollers and 31 of the deaths were in car seats due to positional asphyxia.

Derek Dodd who lost his son, little 11 week old Shepard, died in April this year due to being put to sleep in a car seat at a day-care. He says, "It's not worth getting a little more sleep or 30 minutes more of quiet time," said Derek Dodd. "It's just not worth it when it's as dangerous as it is."

How to avoid Positional Asphyxia

  • Car seats are NOT beds.

  • Always take a few moments to put your baby to sleep on a flat suitable sleeping surface.

  • Always monitor your baby closely when placed in a baby holding device.

  • Always check baby frequently when placed in a car seat while travelling in a car.

  • Always make sure your baby's head isn't kinked sideways or falling forward onto baby's chest.

  • When your baby is in their car seat make sure they are buckled in 100% correctly.

  • Always remove your baby from his or her car seat when arriving at your destination.

  • Never leave your child unattended.

  • Never let your baby sleep in a baby swing or in a car seat used as a hand held carrier.

The best place for your baby to sleep is in a crib, on their back, on a firm mattress and free from any loose bedding.

Who is at risk?

Babies under 1 year old

Example picture of correct and incorrect head postition.:

Please let other parents know, so many of us haven't heard of positional asphyxia and it could save their baby's life.

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