Nature News has an article on a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association that ties lower levels of serotonin to an increased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (also called “cot deaths,” “crib deaths, or “SIDS”). The authors are not sure what causes the low levels or whether the low serotonin levels are the cause or an effect of the deaths and don’t make any sort of recommendations for treatment or changes in care of children.
I’m still surprised at the decrease in crib deaths that happened when we all started telling moms to lay their babies on their backs in the crib. All of my life (and when my kids were babies) we had been taught to lay them on their tummies or sides. However, the more I thought about it, babies are on their backs when nursing from the breast, and so putting them in bed this way probably brings about some protective effect of mimicks one.
Don’t forget: Back to Bed!