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Pediatrician: Keep blankets, pillows away from infants this winter

PHOENIX — Weather in the Valley will continue to cool over the coming months and that has some Valley pediatricians reminding parents to keep it simple when putting infants to bed.

According to Christopher Riley at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, a blanket can be deadly for very young children.

“It’s very easy, especially for young kids under 6 months or so, to be able to rollover, to be able to choke on things like that or to actually be able to essentially tie them in a knot and cut off blood supply to parts of the body,” he said.

Riley said blankets have been linked to suffocation or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in children under 1 year old.

It’s not just blankets — Riley said pillows can also be hazardous to an infant’s breathing.

“They haven’t gotten that strength yet to really turn their head, and so they’re breathing into that pillow, they breathe in too much carbon dioxide and they can asphyxiate and die,” he said.

Riley said the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends parents follow what it calls s”safe sleep practices.”

“No pillow and blankets and sleeping on their backs on a hard surface until they’re about 1,” he said.