SIDS- The Silent Killer
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SIDS- The Silent Killer

what is sids can sids be prevented

SIDS is a phenomenon that affects thousands of families every year. It is a situation that only seems to affect infants and children typically up to one year old. So what is SIDS. SIDS is the acronym for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. It is a situation in which a child dies in their sleep. At this point in time there is no known cause or prevention strategy that has proven to be effective in the prevention of this horrific condition.

 SIDS is a condition that affects every race, nationality, creed, economic status, or any other classification. The data does not show any particular pattern as to whom it may or may not affect, excepting that typically the victims are one year of age or younger. Occasionally they are older, but this is fairly rare. So what do we really know about SIDS. In a nut shell that is about it. There is many research studies underway, but to the best of my knowledge, no real conclusions have been made to date. According to the CDC ( Centers for Disease Control ) there has been a steady decline in the rates of SIDS in America and data collected from other nations show the same pattern of decrease. The reasoning is unclear, but there does seem to be a correlation between the reduction of SIDS cases and encouraging infants to sleep on their back.

SIDS is best defined by the American SIDS Institute-  SIDS is the sudden death of an infant under one year of age which remains unexplained after a thorough case investigation, including performance of a complete autopsy, examination of the death scene, and review of the clinical history. (Willinger et al, 1991).

 Although there is nothing that can be done to prevent SIDS. There are a number of things we can do to support those that have suffered through this great tragedy. Listed below are a few things we can all do to help:

  • Be supportive. Saying " I am sorry for your loss " is all well and good. But it really does not help the parents through this difficult time. Throughout the grieving process, humans have a tendency to forget to eat. So drop some ready made meals. If there are other children in the affected household, maybe offer to take the kids for a few hours.
  • Donate time. Donate some time to your local SIDS organizations will help in ways still to be understood. When you volunteer, it frees up critically needed funds for research. Donate your skills to help those affected. Are you a mason?, then offer to fix the sidewalk or driveway. You get the idea.
  • Donate money. Okay this is a no brainer. When you donate monies to organizations that research conditions such as SIDS, you are making a donation that may save a Childs life. Nothing is more precious or important than children.
  • Attend support meetings. These meetings offer a great deal of information regarding SIDS. They also present current knowledge of what the research teams are discovering. We are learning more everyday. As the old saying goes ' KNOWLEDGE IS POWER '. this is a very true concept in that when we know something we can spread the knowledge around.

In summation, SIDS is a serious consideration for any new parent or expecting parent. It is important that we support the parents of SIDS children to best of our respective abilities. We must constantly remind them, that it is not their fault, that they did nothing to cause this. We must also keep in our own minds that SIDS is something that occurs no matter what we do or do not do. All we can truly do in the end is be supportive and not condescending.

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Comments (1)

Very useful and informative article. Thanks for sharing.