In 2013, 117 babies died in Tennessee due to unsafe sleeping conditions, including co-sleeping (adults, children or pets sleeping with infants) or other unsafe sleep environments, such as couches, chairs or swings, or with comforters, pillows or stuffed animals.
Such deaths are preventable by following the ABCs of safe sleep. It’s important for parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and anyone who cares for an infant to understand these simple tips:
A is for Alone: always put the baby to sleep alone;
B is for on the baby's back: an infant should be placed to sleep on his or her back, not on his or her side or stomach;
C is for Crib: always put a baby to sleep in a crib that is empty of other items such as pillows, toys, blankets and bumper pads.
Click here for more safe sleep tips.
Watch Sandy’s story. After the loss of her child, this mom made it her mission to educate parents and caregivers about safe sleep practices for babies.
Cribs for Kids Program
Can’t afford a crib for your infant?
The East Tennessee Safe Sleep Initiative’s (ETSSI) Cribs for Kids may be able to help. ETSSI is a local coalition made up organizations including the Knox County Health Department, area hospitals and nonprofit organizations. ETSSI provids infant beds and educational information to families in need. Call 865-215-5170 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to see if you qualify for assistance.
Make Sure Your Voice is Heard
We invite individuals or families who have recently experienced the loss of a baby during pregnancy or early infancy to share their stories. Our goal is to provide support, resources, information, and, most importantly, to make sure their voice is heard. This effort is part of our Fetal and Infant Mortality Review program, a national, action-oriented community process that continually assesses, monitors, and works to improve service systems and community resources for women, infants, and families. If you are interested in sharing your story, please contact our staff at 865-660-0896.