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Rest easy and create a safe sleep environment for your baby

13 March 2019

Parents and carers are being reminded to create a safe sleep environment for their infants by keeping the Office of Fair Trading’s (OFT) consumer product safety tips in mind.

This comes as a study by the University of the Sunshine Coast reveals nearly a third of Queensland families with babies have difficulty following safe sleep guidelines.

Fair Trading Acting Executive Director Craig Turner said national organisation Red Nose reported sudden unexpected deaths in infancy had decreased by 85 per cent between 1989 and 2017.

“This shows safe sleep messages are getting across, but there’s still work to do,” Mr Turner said.

“All cots sold by businesses within or into Australia are required to meet the mandatory Australian Standard.

“It’s also important to make sure caregivers and parents use a mattress that is the right size for the cot. For reference this information should be stamped on the base of the cot.”

Mr Turner said another concerning study result was that 10 per cent of families put a pillow in with their infant to sleep and 17 per cent have used a soft toy in a sleeping environment.

“Don’t put anything into the cot with your child, including soft toys, pillows, sheepskins or cot bumpers,” he said.

“Soft items can cause suffocation, and other toys or bulky bedding can become a foothold to let your child climb out of the cot.

“Unless advised to do so by a doctor, the OFT advises not to use sleep positioners such as rolls, cot restraints, wedges or bumpers.

“Knowledge of safe nursery furniture practices and an awareness of other product related dangers within the home is crucial to providing a safe environment for children.”

The OFT will be attending the Essential Baby and Toddler Show at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre from 15-17 March and will be talking to parents and carers about issues to be aware of as children grow.

This will include advice about safe sleeping, bunk bed safety, button batteries and the stability of household furniture.

For more information on product safety visit www.qld.gov.au/fairtrading or call 13 QGOV (13 74 68).