A grieving mother whose 18-month-old daughter suffocated in her sleep is warning all parents of the potential dangers of leaving soft toys in children’s beds.
Taking to Facebook, Dexy Leigh Walsh explained that she used a teddy bear to prevent the child from falling between the mattress and the wall - a decision she now describes as her “biggest regret in life.”
“On the 6th March 8.01am 2018 my life changed, I woke up to get my oldest ready for school to find my youngest baby had passed away.”
“I have been blaming myself,” she continued. “I had packed down the side of her bed with teddys and placed a big one on top of the smaller teddys to stop her from falling down the side of her bed, and she did exactly that but as it was all teddy bears she went under the massive teddy and fell asleep with the angels [sic.]
“All I think about now is what if I just left it empty she would still be here maybe with just a small bump on her head. It’s all what ifs now.”
“I want every parent to see and be aware of this,” she added. “Let them fall don’t try to stuff small places up with soft things just leave it empty. Please move everything off your kid's bed and away from the sides.”
“I really hope my little princesses tragic story can save someone else babies life [sic].”
According to The Lullaby Trust, a charitable organisation that aims to prevent unexpected deaths in infancy, placing unnecessary items in a cot can increase the risk of SIDS if the child’s head becomes covered.
“We advise that a baby’s sleeping space is kept as clear as possible, with no pillows, duvets, soft toys or cot bumpers,” a spokesperson told The Independent.
“Our safer sleep advice relating to reducing the risk of SIDS is relevant for babies under 12 months, after this age it is down to parental choice, but we are aware that some parents continue to follow safer sleep guidance after 12 months.”