Sometimes caregivers put their baby to sleep in an inclined product, such as a swing, bouncer or car seat, for naps or to manage reflux. However, babies are safest when sleeping on a firm, flat sleep surface at every sleep time. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when having conversations about avoiding inclined products for sleeping:
- Research shows that using an inclined product for sleeping (such as a bouncer or car seat, or elevating a crib mattress) can worsen reflux due to compression of baby’s stomach.
- Sleeping on an inclined surface can increase the risk of baby sliding into a position where their airway is obstructed.
- Reflux is common among infants and babies who have reflux are safest when sleeping on their backs.
- Babies may fall asleep when traveling in the car, but parents should take frequent breaks and check on baby often if he or she is sleeping. Once the family reaches their destination, baby should be moved to a firm, flat surface for sleeping.
For specific questions about reflux, families should talk to their baby’s health care provider. You can find more infant safe sleep resources for professionals at www.chawisconsin.org/sbs.