Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), also known as cot death, is the sudden, unexpected and unexplained death of an apparently well baby.
In the UK, at least 300 babies die suddenly and unexpectedly every year. Despite these deaths, SIDS is rare and the risk of your baby dying from it is low.
Most deaths happen during the first three months of a baby’s life. Infants born prematurely or with a low birth weight are at greater risk, and SIDS is also more common in baby boys.
Most unexpected deaths occur while the child is asleep in their cot at night. However, SIDS can also occur when a baby is asleep during the day or, occasionally, while they are awake.
Mothers can reduce the risk of SIDS by not smoking while pregnant or after the baby is born, and always placing the baby on their back when they sleep .