Pros And Cons Of Using A Pillow For Your Baby

Content Team

It is almost impossible to think of a bed without pillows so parents apply the adult mentality to ensuring they get pillows for their babies and young children.

Pillows are neither good or bad in themselves but it depends on when you give a pillow to your baby, the type of pillow.

A report on the ‘onsafety’ US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CSPC) website estimated that in the US, ‘between 1992 and 2010 there were about 700 deaths involving infants 12 months and younger related to pillows and cushions placed in or near a baby’s sleep environment. Nearly half of the infant crib deaths and two-thirds of bassinet deaths reported to CPSC each year are suffocations caused by pillows, thick quilts and/or overcrowding in the baby’s sleeping space.”

It is recommended that babies below one year should not use a pillow due to the increased chance of Sudden Infant Death. At this age, the child may not know what to do when the pillow blocks the nose while turning or moving during sleep. Babies that sleep on their own bed even in a more dangerous position because parents may not detect an anomaly until it is late.

Children above two can use a pillow but it is not necessary because children are smaller and do not need any neck support as adults do.  Besides, if the pillow is too large it can get on top of the baby who may not be fully awake to push off the blockage. Not only that, it could serve as a prop for a climbing baby to step out of the crib which is dangerous.

Therefore, the safest place for your baby to sleep is a crib or cot without items such as pillows, blankets, toys etc.  If you decide to give your 2-year-old toddler a pillow, give her a very flat pillow made for babies.