When you’re a new parent, ensuring your baby is safe while sleeping is a top priority. One common concern many parents have is regarding their baby’s preferred sleep position. In particular, is it safe if a baby sleeps on her side? Let’s delve into this topic.
The Ideal Sleeping Position For Babies
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that healthy infants should be placed on their backs for sleep, both for naps and at night. This position has been found to significantly reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). However, what happens when your baby prefers sleeping on her side?
Baby Sleeping On Her Side: Is It Safe?
It’s important to always place your baby on her back to sleep. However, once your baby is capable of rolling over both ways on her own (usually around 4-6 months), it’s okay if she changes positions in the middle of the night.
If you find that your baby continually rolls onto her side to sleep, it might be a sign that she’s preparing to fully roll over. Still, until she has full control over her movements, you should keep placing her on her back when you lay her down.
What If My Baby Continually Rolls Onto Her Side?
If your baby continually rolls onto her side, there are several steps you can take:
- Try Swaddling: A swaddle may discourage your baby from rolling onto her side, although you should stop using it once she can roll over fully.
- Avoid Use of Sleep Positioners: The FDA strongly advises against the use of sleep positioners, also known as ‘anti-roll’ or ‘nests,’ due to potential suffocation risks.
- Reposition Her: Gently turn your baby onto her back when you find her sleeping on her side.
Remember, while it’s crucial to put your baby to sleep on her back, once she can roll over both ways independently, it’s okay if she shifts her position.
Is It Common For Babies To Sleep On Their Sides?
Babies have their own preferences when it comes to sleep positions. Some prefer to sleep on their backs, while others might roll onto their sides. This can often lead parents to ask, “Why does my baby sleep on her side?” and “Is it safe for my baby to sleep on her side?”
Should Babies Sleep On Their Sides?
The American Academy of Pediatrics advises parents to place their babies on their backs for sleep. While it’s not uncommon for babies to sleep on their sides, it’s crucial to continue putting your baby to sleep on her back until she’s old enough to roll over both ways by herself.
What If My Baby Won’t Sleep On Her Back?
If your baby won’t sleep on her back and prefers to roll onto her side, it’s important to continue putting her to sleep on her back. However, if she’s able to roll over by herself, she can maintain the position she finds most comfortable.
Should I Roll My Baby Back Over At Night?
If your baby can’t roll over both ways by herself, it’s recommended to gently roll her back onto her back whenever you find her sleeping on her side.
Can My Newborn Sleep On Her Side On My Chest?
While skin-to-skin contact is beneficial for both parent and baby, it’s essential to transfer your baby to her own sleep surface (a crib or bassinet) on her back when it’s time to sleep.
What About After Feeding? What’s The Best Position?
After feeding, your baby should be burped and then placed on her back in her crib or bassinet to sleep. This position is the safest and reduces the risk of SIDS.
Is It Okay For My Newborn To Sleep With Her Head To The Side?
Yes, it is okay for your newborn to turn her head to the side while sleeping, as long as she is on her back and her face is not covered or pressed against the mattress or any other item that could impede her breathing.
How SleepBaby.org Can Help
At SleepBaby.org, we are dedicated to helping parents navigate the often challenging world of baby sleep. Our resources offer expert advice and guidance on various topics, including safe sleep positions, creating optimal sleep environments, and establishing healthy sleep habits.
Whether you’re curious about sleep positions, deciphering your baby’s sleep patterns, or looking for tips to help your little one sleep through the night, we are here to help. Explore SleepBaby.org to discover a wealth of knowledge aimed at ensuring both you and your baby enjoy the benefits of sound sleep.
Ensuring your baby is sleeping safely is paramount. Always place your baby on her back to sleep and maintain a safe sleeping environment. It’s natural to worry when your baby starts to sleep on her side, but with the right knowledge and precautions, you can ensure she sleeps safely and soundly.