Jump to:  A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G   |   H   |   I   |   J   |   K   |   L   |   M   |   N   |   O   |   P   |   Q   |   R   |   S   |   T   |   U   |   V   |   W   |   X   |   Y

Bed-Sharing With Babies Tied to More Breast-Feeding

TUESDAY, Sept. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Mothers who sleep with their babies are more likely to breast-feed them and breast-feed them longer, a new study finds. Even so, the study authors advise against co-sleeping.

The risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or suffocation associated with "co-sleeping" is far greater than any benefit of promoting breast-feeding, the researchers said.

"What we found, which was kind of what we expected, was the longer the mother bed-shared the longer she was likely to breast-feed," said lead researcher Dr. Fern Hauck, a distinguished professor of family medicine and director of the International Family Medicine Clinic at the University of Virginia.

"We definitely want mothers to breast-feed. It's the healthiest and most nutritious way for infants to get fed," she said. "But, the other side of the coin is, we know that bed-sharing has its hazards, specifically related to sudden infant death syndrome or suffocation."

The evidence of the risk is strong even among women who are breast-feeding, Hauck said. "Looking at the balance of things, we are still recommending that mothers do not bed-share even though it has an influence on breast-feeding," she said.

Hauck suggested that babies "should sleep close to mom, but not in the same bed."

The report was published Sept. 23 in the online edition of JAMA Pediatrics.

"Most pediatricians would agree with the conclusion of the study," said Dr. Jose Rosa-Olivares, medical director of the pediatric care center at Miami Children's Hospital.

Given the risk of SIDS and suffocation, it is difficult to support recommendations that mothers should bed-share with their infant, said Rosa-Olivares, who was not involved with the new study.

"The dangers of SIDS and suffocation are more important than the benefit of breast-feeding," he said. "Breast-feeding is extremely important, but to put the child at risk is not worth it."

Dr. Peter Richel, chief of pediatrics at Northern Westchester Hospital Center in Mount Kisco, N.Y., added: "I am a strong proponent of breast-feeding because of all the benefits to the mother and child. However, I would recommend, and always have, against bed-sharing even in lieu of the data from the study."

Richel said that even if the risk of SIDS from bed-sharing is slight, "it is something I want no family to ever have to endure."

To see whether bed-sharing increased the odds of breast-feeding and feeding for a longer time, Hauck's team used data from the study on infant feeding practices that followed pregnant women through their infants' first year of life.

Of about 1,800 women in the study, those who bed-shared the most were more likely to breast-feed and breast-feed for the longest amount of time, compared to those who bed-shared for the least amount of time or didn't bed-share at all.

Moreover, women who had more education, were white, had breast-fed before, had planned to breast-feed and hadn't returned to work in the first year after having a baby breast-fed the longest.

While some groups like the La Leche League support bed-sharing to promote breast-feeding for some mothers, the American Academy of Pediatrics advises against it and supports separate, but nearby, sleeping, Hauck said.

Although the benefits of breast-feeding are clear and while most women say they intend to breast-feed, less than one-third actually do, according to a study published last year in the July issue of Pediatrics.

The World Health Organization and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that babies be breast-fed exclusively for the first six months of their lives. Previous research has found that only 35 percent of American infants are breast-fed exclusively for three months, and only 15 percent for the recommended six months, the authors of that study noted.

More information

For more about breast-feeding, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics.

SOURCES: Fern Hauck, M.D., Spencer P. Bass, M.D. Twenty-First Century Professor of Family Medicine, and director, International Family Medicine Clinic, University of Virginia, Charlottesville; Jose Rosa-Olivares, M.D., medical director, pediatric care center, Miami Children's Hospital; Peter Richel, M.D., chief of pediatrics, Northern Westchester Hospital Center, Mount Kisco, N.Y.; Sept. 23, 2013, JAMA Pediatrics, online

Reviewed Date: --

Find a pediatrician
Health Tips
11 Ways to Raise a Healthy Child
A Parent’s Guide to Choosing Child Care
Baby’s Emotional, Intellectual Development
Boost Your Teen Daughter’s Body Image
Breastfeeding Helps Mothers and Children
Cool Tools to Keep Your Kids From Smoking
Could Your Child Have a Drug Problem?
Do Parents Influence Their Kids’ Health Behaviors?
For Kids, Games Can Build Strong Minds
Giving Your Baby the Best Nutrition
Growing Up Short or Heavy Can Be Difficult
Guidelines for Raising Smoke-Free Kids
Help Your Babysitter Prepare for Anything
Helping Children Conquer Fear
How Old Is 'Old Enough' for Contacts?
How to Prevent Childhood Obesity
How to Reduce the Risk for SIDS
How to Talk About Drugs With Your Kids
Is It Time for Toilet Training?
Is Your Child Too Sick for Day Care or School?
Keeping Your Cool When Parenting Teens
Kids' Health Concerns Ease with Age
Knock Down the Hurdles to Breastfeeding
Letting Kids Grow Up…At Their Own Pace
Making Rules for Children Reinforces Love
Making This School Year Your Child's Best Ever
New Parents...Sore Backs
Parents-to-Be Must Communicate
Paying for Attention: Abuse of Prescription ADHD Drugs Rising on College Campuses
Preparing Your Daughter for Changes
Reading to Kids Helps Their Development
Solving Battles at Mealtime
Sports and Music: Both Good for Kids
Talk With Your Kids About These Issues
Talking Sex with Your Teen
Teens and Talk: What's a Parent to Do?
TV vs. Activity: Key Choice for Kids
We Can Head Off Teen Tragedies
Weight Room No Longer Off-Limits to Kids
What Kids Drink Is Important, Too
When Children Say 'No' to New Foods
When to Call the Doctor for Childhood Illnesses
When Your Child Says, 'I'm Sick'
Your Child's Imaginary Friend…What It Means
Your Child's Social and Emotional Development
Quizzes
Breastfeeding Quiz
Child Development Quiz
Sleep: Test Your Knowledge
Diseases & Conditions
Adding to Mother's Milk
AIDS/HIV in Children
Anatomy of a Child's Brain
Anatomy of the Endocrine System in Children
Anxiety Disorders in Children
Asthma and Children
Asthma in Children Index
At Work
Bicycle, In-Line Skating, Skateboarding Safety--Injury Statistics and Incidence Rates
Bipolar Disorder in Children
Bone Marrow Transplantation in Children
Brain Tumors in Children
Breast Milk Collection and Storage
Breast Milk Expression
Breast Milk Expression - Helpful Equipment
Breast Milk: Pumping, Collecting, Storing
Breastfeeding and Returning To Work
Breastfeeding Difficulties - Baby
Breastfeeding Difficulties - Mother
Breastfeeding Overview
Breastfeeding the High-Risk Newborn
Breastfeeding Your Baby
Breastfeeding: Getting Started
Chemotherapy for Children: Side Effects
Child Care
Delayed or Not Enough Milk Production
Diphtheria in Children
Discipline
During an Asthma Attack
Effective Breastfeeding
Effective Sucking
Ewing Sarcoma
Firearms
Flat or Inverted Nipples
Getting Ready
Hepatitis B (HBV) in Children
How Milk Is Made
Ineffective Latch-on or Sucking
Inflammatory and Infectious Musculoskeletal Disorders
Inflammatory and Infectious Neurological Disorders
Inguinal Hernia in Children
Insect Bites and Children
Insufficient or Delayed Milk Production
Kidney Transplantation in Children
Low Milk Production
Maternal Nutrition and Breastfeeding
Maternity Leave
Meningitis in Children
Milk Expression
Milk Expression Techniques
Mismanaged Breastfeeding
Mood Disorders in Children and Adolescents
Moving Toward Breastfeeding
Muscular Dystrophy
Myasthenia Gravis in Children
Newborn Multiples
Osteosarcoma in Children
Overactive Let-Down
Pediatric Blood Disorders
Plugged Milk Ducts
Poliomyelitis (Polio) in Children
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Children
Preparing the School-Aged Child for Surgery
Schizophrenia in Children
School-Aged Child Nutrition
Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis
Sore Nipples
Sports Safety for Children
Storing Your Breast Milk
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
Superficial Injuries Overview
Surgery and the Breastfeeding Infant
Taking Care of Your Breast Pump and Collection Kit
Television and Children
Thalassemia
Thawing Breast Milk
The Benefits of Mother's Own Milk
The Growing Child: 1 to 3 Months
The Growing Child: 10 to 12 Months
The Growing Child: 2-Year-Olds
The Growing Child: 4 to 6 Months
The Growing Child: 7 to 9 Months
The Growing Child: Newborn
The Growing Child: Preschool (4 to 5 Years)
The Growing Child: School-Age (6 to 12 Years)
The Heart
The Kidneys
Transient Tachypnea of the Newborn
Using a Breast Pump
Vision Overview
Whooping Cough (Pertussis)
Your Workplace

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.