Scientist looking into microscope

Around 230 babies and toddlers still die every year from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) in the UK.

Research has shown that several maternal and infant care factors are more commonly associated with babies who die of SIDS than those who survive. While it is clear that not all the factors are modifiable, there are some that you can change in order to reduce the risk of SIDS.

As such, The Lullaby Trust, along with many other organisations, provides advice for parents to reduce the risk of SIDS.

The evidence regarding a wide range of potential SIDS risk factors is outlined in our full evidence base factsheet.

Based on the evidence, a number of factors have been identified as the key, established, modifiable factors associated with either a high increased risk of SIDS or decreased risk of SIDS.

It is on these risk factors that we focus our advice to parents, as outlined in the table below:

Factors associated with an increased risk of SIDS Factors associated with a decreased risk of SIDS
Unsafe sleeping positions Room sharing
 Smoking Breastfeeding
 Unsafe sleeping environments:

  • Bedsharing and sofa sharing (with particular high risk circumstances highlighted)
  • Temperature
  • Bedding and mattresses

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