Study finds babies more likely to die from SIDS on New Years Day

By Brandi Hodges - bio | email

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - With New Years Eve one day away, doctors are warning parents to pay close attention to their sleeping babies.  A new study ties the first day of the New Year with the death of more than 2,000 babies every year.  Published in the journal "Addiction", the study finds that deaths from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome increase by more than 33% on New Years Day.

Newborn Bryx Chandler is only a day old and has plenty of folks ready to watch out for him!  About 2,500 babies die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in the United States every year and researchers have found that the majority of those deaths happen on New Years Day.

"Babies are usually very young.  95% are less than six months of age," said Dr. William Henry, a doctor at NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Henry said newborns like baby Bryx are not in as much danger as babies who are a little older.

"Most of them, I think 85% of the children who are diagnosed with this are between the ages of two and six months of age," said Dr. Henry.

The study ties the merriment associated with New Years Eve and New Years Day to the deaths.

"Parents might be increasing their drinking during that period of time and even some consideration of the fact that inebriated parents may not be as responsible," said Dr. Henry.

Dr. Henry said he believes more studies will be required to specifically target a cause for the increase.

"It may not be so much the alcohol.  It could be, it could not be but it also may be some of the other things that parents who would indulge in the alcohol would do," said Dr. Henry.

He said an increased smoking rate has been tied to SIDS.  There are no warning signs or tests to determine if you baby is in jeopardy, but there are precautions you can take. 

"You want to make sure that you don't over-warm your baby, put too much clothing on them in the winter time.  There is a higher incidence of SIDS in the winter time," said Dr. Henry.

The study finds that if parents drink too much and sleep longer they may miss signs that their infant is in distress.

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