AN animated film has been launched as part of a campaign to help new parents to keep their babies safe.
The campaign – entitled Live Well Little Ones – gives parents information on how best to look after their new babies, focusing on areas such as safer sleeping, crying, and keeping babies at the right temperature.
Leicester City Council launched the campaign on Monday, March 13, with the animated film focusing on the most common scenarios faced by new parents bringing up young children. It also coincides with the start of The Lullaby Trust’s Safer Sleep Week.
In addition to safe sleeping practices, the film offers help and support to parents struggling to deal with issues such as babies crying, or coping when getting stressed or angry.
The film also shares the message that parents and carers should never shake their babies.
It is all part of a campaign to reduce infant mortality rates across the city. In 2021-2022, 44 infant deaths in children under 12 months were recorded in Leicester, with the main risk factors identified being parental smoking and maternal obesity. Unsafe sleeping was also identified as a risk factor.
In addition, a clear association was found between child mortality and deprivation.
Leicester assistant city mayor for health, Cllr Vi Dempster, said: “Being a new parent can be really difficult, and it is possible to feel completely overwhelmed both by the level of responsibility and the sheer amount of advice that is out there.
“This campaign is designed to offer clear, simple to use advice and also to reassure parents who are struggling that they are not alone, and help is available.”
Chair of the Child Death Overview Panel for Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, Rob Howard, added: “These videos from the Live Well Little Ones campaign are really clear and vitally important. They should be shared far and wide.
“They are full of simple, straight forward messages and advice for parents and carers. Every year we review the tragic deaths of babies who may have not come to harm if these simple messages were more widely known. Please share them and help us all to keep babies safe.”
The messages from the campaign include:
- Safer Sleep practices help reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) or other injuries such as suffocation.
- Always lie babies on their backs in a flat, clear, sleep space like a cot or Moses basket.
- Never co-sleep with a baby if you smoke, have had alcohol, taken drugs, or taken medication which makes you sleepy.
- Always have a safer sleep plan, especially if you’re going to be away from home.
- Babies do cry and you can cope. If your baby is safe, it is okay to walk away to calm down for a few minutes. Never shake your baby.
- If parents/family members are struggling with looking after their new baby, to contact their midwife, health visitor or GP for support.
Consultant paediatrician Dr Suzi Armitage, said: “Live Well Little Ones covers some vital messages for everyone about simple ways to keep babies safe, including during sleep times.
“The clear information and illustrations highlight key points for anyone involved in the care of young children, to help ensure that every baby can stay safe and live well.”
The video is available here.