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Other ways to reduce cot death risk

Breastfeed your baby

Breastfeeding your baby reduces the risk of cot death. Aim to breastfeed your baby for as long as you can.

Some mothers like to bring their baby into bed to breastfeed. It is safe to feed your baby in bed as long as you put them back in their own cot to sleep.


Giving your baby a soother (dummy) at the start of every sleep may reduce their risk of cot death. If you only give them a soother for some sleeps, it may not be as effective.

Regular soother use is the best way for your baby to use a soother.

If you choose to give your baby a soother:

  • offer the soother to your baby at the start of every sleep, both day and night
  • do not force your baby to use a soother if your baby does not like it
  • do not worry if the soother falls out while your baby is asleep
  • if you're breastfeeding, wait until this is well-established before introducing a soother
  • do not use clips or chains to attach soother to clothing as this is a choking risk
  • keep soothers clean and never dip them in sugar, honey or other food and drinks

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page last reviewed: 14/11/2018
next review due: 14/11/2021