Retailers are saying “No thanks” to inclined sleepers.
Here’s why that’s a good thing.
In the spring of this year, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC) issued a massive recall of every Fisher Place Rock ‘N’ Play—all 5 million of them—when it was discovered that the product was linked to over 30 infant deaths. Understandably, exhausted parents everywhere issued forth a collective sigh of frustration, but overall were grateful that this product, which directly contradicted the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) Safe Sleep Guidelines, was being pulled from the shelves.
In October, the CSPC then issued a warning to parents and caregivers to forgo using *any* inclined sleeper for infants, citing a new study linking these types of products to over 70 infant deaths from 2005-2019.
Finally, it seems that retailers are taking notice too.
In early December, four key retailers—Amazon, Walmart, eBay, and Buy, Buy, Baby—decided to stop selling infant inclined sleepers. For online behemoth Amazon, the transition will take time, despite inclined sleepers being added to their banned products list. Brick and mortar stores like Buy Buy Baby and Walmart have already pulled the products from their shelves.
And while this is definitely a safe sleep win for families and babies everywhere, it appears that some manufacturers will continue to make and sell these inclined sleepers in spite of the evidence that they pose a danger. And other major retailers like Target, Macy’s, and Kohl’s still have them in their stores (and second-hand sites like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are swarming with them), so we still have a ways to go.
It may end up requiring some sort of legislation to stop manufacturers from making more of these products, like the Safe Sleep for Babies Act, introduced in the House in June (a companion bill was also introduced in the Senate). It probably comes as no surprise that there’s been little movement on either bill, but you can keep a watch on it here (or call your Congressperson if infant safe sleep advocacy is your jam).
SO. What’s an exhausted parent or caregiver to do? Babies who use a safe sleep space, and whose parents and caregivers follow the AAPs’ safe sleep guidelines, are far less likely to die from SIDS or suffocation. Full stop.
Need a guidelines refresher? We got you (fun fact: we even print these safety tips on the headboard of every Smitten).
- Babies should be put to bed alone (meaning no lovies or stuffies or bumpers or or soft bedding like blankets),
- On their backs,
- On a firm, flat surface, like in a crib or bassinet or Smitten.