Program offers tips for keeping babies safe in the cold

BALTIMORE - As the region continues to deal with record cold temperatures, Baltimore City is working to promote a campaign to remind parents about the best way to keep your little ones safe and warm on a cold night.

This comes as many parents are uneducated about the proper way to put their children to bed on a cold night. Dearea Matthews knows this all too well.

"On December 29, 2009 my youngest son Charlie passed away," she said. "That morning we woke up and he wasn't breathing. We knew something was wrong.

Matthews said her little boy went sleep in the warm comfort of his mom's bed and he didn't wake up. He was just about a month old.

She said back then she never would have thought twice about having her baby boy swaddled in a blanket and near her like that. And when she talks to new mothers now and tells them her story and why babies should always sleep alone in a crib on their back they don't believe it.

"They'll say my grandmother or my mother or I did this with all five of my other children. Why would this child be different?" Matthews said.

But babies who sleep in bed with a parent are three times more likely to die than babies that sleep alone. Doctors say that sleeping alone also means not covering a child with heavy blankets or too many covers or a crib full of toys.

B'More for Healthy Babies reports the proper way  to put a baby to bed is wearing a one-piece pajama or and if you want another layer put a onsie or another layer under.

The city says every month two babies die in Baltimore city in from deaths that could have been prevented.

"It's very hard to get people to see things through my eyes," Matthews said.

For more information, visit B'More for Healthy Babies.

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