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Many parents spend the time before their baby arrives preparing their home environment. Thinking about safe sleeping is really important as part of this preparation.

The Lullaby Trust provide key safety information for you to consider in this preparation time. Watch this video from them about safer sleep for babies:


Some parents find the challenge of tiredness huge, and for some falling asleep with their baby is a real possibility. The Lullaby trust also provides key information which covers the topic of co sleeping and if there is a possibility this might happen (through choice or by chance) how to undertake this as safely as possible.

Co-sleeping Key messages

Do not co-sleep with your baby if:

  • You or your partner smoke (even if not in bedroom)
  • You or your partner have had alcohol or are on any medication
  • You are extremely tired
  • Your baby was born prematurely (37 weeks or below)
  • Your baby was born weighing less than 2.5kg or 5 1/2lbs

There is an increased risk if you are on a sofa or armchair, as this increases the risk of SIDS by 50 times.

Co-sleeping guidance

Babies should sleep in a clear sleep space, which is easy to create in a cot or Moses basket.

When choosing to co-sleep

  • Keep pillows, sheets, blankets away from your baby or any other items that could obstruct your baby’s breathing or cause them to overheat
  • Follow all of the Lullaby Trust safer sleep advice to reduce the risk of SIDS such as sleeping baby on their back
  • Avoid letting pets or other children in the bed
  • Make sure baby won’t fall out of bed or get trapped between the mattress and the wall

This video from the Lullaby Trust gives advice on how to make co-sleeping safer

Further help and support

We have a duty health visitor working from our public health nursing hub Monday to Friday 9 – 4.30. Please do contact them if you have any additional questions.


Have your say

Help us improve the local information on this website and give us feedback about any contacts you have had with our service by completing the Devon Public Health Nursing feedback form.

ChatHealth Logo

Devon County Council runs a confidential secure text messaging service for parents of children aged 0-19 years called ChatHealth. The service operates Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm, excluding bank holidays. All texts will be responded to by a public health nurse (health visitor/school nurse) within 24 hours. Outside of the service working hours, you’ll receive a message back to inform you that your text will be responded to once the line reopens. You can also call our Public Health Nursing hubs on the numbers listed below.

If you are concerned about the safety of a child in Devon, contact our Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) on 0345 155 1071 or email with as much information as possible.

This page was last reviewed on 28-04-2022

This page will be next reviewed on 28-04-2025