Back To Sleep

Dr. Banta, OTD, MS, OTR/L, CIMI-II

Welcome to my monthly blog courtesy of Healthy Start Coalition of Brevard County. My name is Dr. Caylee Banta and I am a pediatric occupational therapist serving the children of Brevard County, FL. For my first topic, I believe it is the important way to start and educate/discuss what “Back to Sleep” truly means.

When we think about “Back to Sleep” we can also look at the evolution of sleeping programs that have been in place for our babies. The Back to Sleep Program was developed in the 1980’s in developed countries to reduce the number of infant deaths. There was a heavy influence by the media to portray this program as lifesaving, but after the media began to diminish  talks of the program and not discuss it much, it was then up to healthcare providers to educate families of the benefits. One area that research finds that healthcare providers lacked was not only educating on the “back to sleep” program, but the dangers of putting your baby on their tummy to sleep or “prone to sleep.”

The Back to Sleep Program, although, has been around for many years continues to be constructively modified and perfected. Since the program has been in effect it seems that the number of parents aware of the program has decreased by 7% from the 1990s to the 2000s—but the decrease in knowledge goes back to educating not only on back to sleep but the safety concerns of sleeping on the tummy.

Let’s take a look at the benefits of Back to Sleep, Tummy to Play program. This program is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The 2 most important things to remember when practicing safe sleep practices is:

  • babies are safest when sleeping on their backs at nighttime and during naps.
  • tummy time is a great position or prone for babies to “play” but they need to be watched. This position helps promote strong muscles in a gravity resistant plane.

Majority of babies do not like tummy time, especially as newborns. They prefer to be cuddled and held in positions of comfort such as if they were in utero. Parents will typically ask “what amount of time is appropriate for tummy time?” Tummy time should start when the baby comes home from hospital. Babies should experience tummy time as much as they can tolerate multiple times per day and the tolerance should be built up as the baby continues to build muscle strength and enjoy the activity. What does tummy time do?

  • encourages muscle strength
  • prepares the baby for their developmental milestones including crawling
  • incorporates visual scanning -improves neck control

*A tip to get your baby to enjoy tummy time is place an interactive toy in front of them or you get on the floor with them and vocalize (sing nursery rhymes, encourage cooing, etc.)

The Back to Sleep Program says that you should always place babies back to sleep EVEN during their naps. Babies need to be placed on a firm surface with no objects near the baby that could increase the risk of entrapment. Baby should not having anything that could cover their face during sleep. Babies should be in a temperature that is comfortable where they do not get too hot.

Please let me know if you have any more questions and always remember BACK TO SLEEP and TUMMY TO PLAY!

Back to Sleep, Tummy to Play (Copyright © 2008 American Academy of Pediatrics, Updated 08/2016)

a huge thank you to Sunshine Health during these UNPRECEDENTED times

Donations play an important role during these unprecedented times.  Our Coalition is grateful for those that can help others who are in need.  A huge thank you goes to Sunshine Health for thinking of the moms and babies in Brevard County.  These Walmart gift cards will directly benefit the Healthy Start moms and babies that are in dire need in our county.

 Thank you very much for your generous donation to the Healthy Start Coalition of Brevard. 

Are you or someone you know pregnant or recently had a baby during the Coronavirus Pandemic?

Due to the impact of COVID-19, we are taking every precaution we can for the safety of our staff and our moms and babies of Brevard, while working within the best practices set forth by the CDC, the Florida Department of Health, and the State of Florida.

Now more than ever it is crucial that pregnant women and new parents are offered the support and assistance they need.

We are still here for you! During this unprecedented time, our “home-visiting” services will be provided via video-conferencing or over the phone. Our team has put internal protocols into place based on recommendations and guidance from the Florida Department of Health and the Agency for Healthcare Administration regarding technology, working remotely, and HIPAA.

We wanted to thank all of our staff, Healthy Start care coordinators, and Nurse Family Partnership nurses for adjusting to these new times and still providing ongoing support to our moms and babies of Brevard County.

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 321.634.6101.

Healthy Start’s 24th Annual Workshop Maternal and Infant Health

November 1, 2019
8:30 AM – 1:30 PM

To explore the circumstances that are associated with maternal
and infant health as it relates to preeclampsia, gestational diabetes,
and preterm labor and how they impact birth outcomes.

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Workshop Cost: $40.00 (Includes continental breakfast)
Location: Florida Department of Health, Brevard County
Bill Posey Conference Center, 2555 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Viera, FL 32940

Keynote Speakers:

  • Preeclampsia: What Women Need To Know
    Rebecca Britt, Director of Education and Engagement, Preeclampsia Foundation
  • Diabetes in Pregnancy and Birth Outcomes
    Dr. Jane Ierardi, MD, Medical Director of the Nemours Florida Partnerships
  • Preterm Labor and Outcomes of Pretermature Birth
    Dr. Narendra Dereddy, MD, Medical Director Neonatologist at AdventHealth
    Dr. Lori Boardman, MD, ScM, Executive Medical Director, Women’s Health at AdventHealth

3.5 CEU Credits were given to:  Teachers, Nutritionists and Nurses (RNs, LPNs, CNAs, ARNPs, Midwives)

A Special Thank You To Our Sponsors.
Without you, this workshop would not have been possible…

Health First – Gold Sponsor
Sunshine Health – Gold Sponsor
Rockledge Regional Medical Center – Silver Sponsor
Intercoastal Insurance Inc – Silver Sponsor

Healthy Babies Start With Healthy Moms