Safer Sleep Guidelines: Tips for Parents and Caregivers


Being a parent to a new baby can be overwhelming for so many reasons. Everyone has an opinion on how you should raise your baby, from how often you hold your baby to the “right” way for sleep training and everything in between. We put together this read with the top safer sleep practices every parent and caregiver should know.

Sleep Position

Placing your baby on their back for both naps and night’s sleep for the first year of life is always the safest.

When your baby starts showing signs of attempting to roll, swaddling should no longer be used. This will roughly around two months old. Swaddling infants may cause them roll more easily from back to stomach and not be able to use their arms to support, so it is important to monitor this and make the adjustments to a sleep sack for a safer option.

What if the baby likes to sleep on their stomach?

If a baby is put on their back and rolls on to their own stomach, in this instance it is not necessary to adjust their position.

Tummy Time – placing your baby on their stomach while awake is important for your baby to develop different muscles and motor skills. However, tummy time should always be when the baby is awake and supervised.

*If the baby falls asleep, they should be placed on a safe sleep surface on their back.

Placing the baby to rest on their back is the safest sleep position. If they are able to roll both ways and roll to their stomach while sleeping, you do not need to return them to their back.

Sleep Surface and Area

The safest option is to put the baby to sleep on a firm, flat surface. 

Sleep surfaces can vary depending on cultural tradition, space and mobility. The most important thing is to put baby to sleep on a firm, flat surface.

Below are examples of firm, flat sleep surfaces other than bassinets, cribs or Pack N’ Plays that may be used:


Below are examples of traditional tribal sleep surfaces: