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Bed-Sharing Precautions

The safest place for a baby to sleep is in a safety-approved crib or bassinet in the same room with a parent or caregiver. Adult beds are not made for babies and increase the risk of accidental entrapment and suffocation.

Last year in Texas, Child Protective Services investigated 159 infant deaths where bed-sharing (also known as co-sleeping) was a factor. The exact causes of most of those deaths are not known.

Warnings

  • Avoid crevices between the mattress and a wall that could entrap an infant. 
  • Never sleep with an infant on a soft mattress, couch, recliner, or any soft surface. 
  • Avoid blankets, stuffed animals, and pillows that could cover a baby's face. 
  • Don't let other adults or older children sleep with your infant.
  • Co-sleeping is especially risky if the adult is:
      • Under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.
      • Sick, unusually tired, or taking medication that causes sleepiness.
      • Very upset or angry.

Statistics

Overview

Total Texas Infant Deaths where Bed-Sharing (Co-Sleeping) was a factor
Year Number of Fatalities
2016 (as of 4/6/16) 87
2015 159
2014 197
2013 169
2012 167
2011 174
2010 166

Note: Caseworkers have recorded these numbers during the normal course of investigations. Each year represents a state fiscal year covering September 1st through August 31st.

Detailed Statistics

Total Texas Infant Deaths where Bed-Sharing (Co-Sleeping) was a factor

As of 4/6/16

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 9
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 78
Total Fatalities 87
  Age
Under 1 yr 74
1-3 yr 4
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 78
  Gender
Male 49
Female 29
Total 78
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 29
Anglo 20
Hispanic 25
Other 4
Total 78

As of 10/05/15

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 16
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 143
Total Fatalities 159
  Age
Under 1 yr 156
1-3 yr 3
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 159
  Gender
Male 92
Female 67
Total 159
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 50
Anglo 44
Hispanic 51
Other 14
Total 159

As of 09/08/14

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 12
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 185
Total Fatalities 197
  Age
Under 1 yr 193
1-3 yr 4
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 197
  Gender
Male 113
Female 84
Total 197
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 64
Anglo 53
Hispanic 71
Other 9
Total 197

FY 2013

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 17
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 152
Total Fatalities 169
  Age
Under 1 yr 163
1-3 yr 6
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 169
  Gender
Male 90
Female 79
Total 169
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 53
Anglo 38
Hispanic 72
Other 6
Total 169

FY 2012

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 28
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 139
Total Fatalities 167
  Age
Under 1 yr 161
1-3 yr 6
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 167
  Gender
Male 94
Female 73
Total 167
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 54
Anglo 53
Hispanic 54
Other 6
Total 167

FY 2011

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 19
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 155
Total Fatalities 174
  Age
Under 1 yr 168
1-3 yr 6
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 174
  Gender
Male 106
Female 68
Total 174
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 53
Anglo 43
Hispanic 65
Other 13
Total 174

FY 2010

  Fatalities
Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 25
Non-Abuse/Neglect Related Fatalities 141
Total Fatalities 166
  Age
Under 1 yr 163
1-3 yr 3
4-6 yr 0
Over 6 0
Total 166
  Gender
Male 102
Female 63
Total 165
  Race/Ethnicity
African American 55
Anglo 49
Hispanic 55
Other 7
Total 166