52 of 56 sudden baby deaths in Minnesota related to sleep environment

A Minnesota Department of Health analysis reveals that 52 of the 56 babies who died suddenly and unexpectedly in 2014 were kept in an unsafe sleep environment.

About half of those babies were sharing a sleeping surface, such as a bed or sofa, with another person. The other half were in an unsafe sleeping position, such as on their side or stomach or with loose objects around them.

The health department is urging all parents to reduce the risk to their kids by following safe sleep practices:

Babies should sleep separately from other sleeping children and adults.

Place infants on their backs in a safety-approved crib that is free of blankets, pillows, bumper pads, stuffed animals and toys, in a smoke-free environment. Cribs made and sold after June 28, 2011 must meet federal requirements for crib safety.