Bed sharing/Co-sleeping and SIDS/Teaching Method

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Though SIDS is unpredictable, there are certain factors that can be used to help prevent it and non bed sharing is one of them. Further education is necessary in order to get the point across that infant bed sharing does show to be placing the infant in harms way, whether by the parent overlaying, blankets covering their mouth and nose forcing them to rebreathe their exhaled CO2, compressing with their limbs, or wearing clothes smelling of cigarettes.

Social learning theory will be useful for this population due to the age group of the new mother population and that bed sharing is a social practice. Teaching must be taught at the cognitive domain and it may be necessary to give one on one instruction to new mothers before they are discharged to help them adhere to not co-sleeping with their new baby.

Roger’s (1985) Diffusion of Innovations Theory will be helpful in not only educating but also persuading new families to refrain from bed sharing. The Innovation is infant safety in preventing SIDS caused by aspects of bed sharing such as parental overlaying, blankets covering nose and mouth, compression from parental limbs, or asphyxiation from cigarette smoke aroma from the parent’s clothes. Communicating this will be through online media i.e. Wikieducator, or placing flyers in pediatric offices, birthing classes, labor and delivery wards, or even patient discharge teaching to new mothers. During this time, hopefully the new mothers will form a decision to accept that bed sharing could increase their infant’s risk of SIDS. The rate of adoption could be as slow as one family at a time. The debate of bed sharing has been going on for many years, and it may take just as long to get the point across that co sleeping does place the infant in harms way.