How does cot death prevention advice influence parents' behaviour?

Child Care Health Dev. 2008 Sep;34(5):613-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2214.2008.00838.x. Epub 2008 Jun 28.


Objective: To explore parents' understanding of the recommended cot death prevention strategies, and to discuss what they are doing in practice. If there is a difference between knowledge and implementation measures, possible reasons for this will be considered.

Study design: A qualitative study using thematic analysis, aimed at finding out attitudes and opinions of parents about cot death prevention measures. Twelve participants were interviewed from two disadvantaged communities in south Birmingham.

Results: Parents found that much of the cot death prevention advice they were provided with was conflicting and caused confusion. As such, many parents chose to follow advice from non-healthcare sources. Some parents were carrying out preventative measures but were not aware of the reason for doing it. Many felt they did not receive enough advice relating to cot death prevention.

Conclusion: Cot death health promotion advice appears to be inadequate among patients from a deprived socioeconomic background. Some of these issues could be resolved with increased training addressing these matters.

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Health Promotion / methods
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Parents
  • Sudden Infant Death / prevention & control*