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International Journal of Pediatrics
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 468538, 16 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/468538
Review Article

Is “Bed Sharing” Beneficial and Safe during Infancy? A Systematic Review

1Department of Pediatrics, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar 751019, India
2Newborn Health and Knowledge Centre (NHKC), Department of Pediatrics, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi 110029, India

Received 5 October 2013; Accepted 25 November 2013; Published 30 January 2014

Academic Editor: Namık Yaşar Özbek

Copyright © 2014 Rashmi Ranjan Das et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background. There is conflicting evidence regarding the safety and efficacy of bed sharing during infancy—while it has been shown to facilitate breastfeeding and provide protection against hypothermia, it has been identified as a risk factor for SIDS. Methods. A systematic search of major databases was conducted. Eligible studies were observational studies that enrolled infants in the first 4 weeks of life and followed them up for a variable period of time thereafter. Results. A total of 21 studies were included. Though the quality of evidence was low, bed sharing was found to be associated with higher breastfeeding rates at 4 weeks of age (75.5% versus 50%, OR 3.09 (95% CI 2.67 to 3.58), ) and an increased risk of SIDS (23.3% versus 11.2%, OR 2.36 (95% CI 1.97 to 2.83), ). Majority of the studies were from developed countries, and the effect was almost consistent across the studies. Conclusion. There is low quality evidence that bed sharing is associated with higher breast feeding rates at 4 weeks of age and an increased risk of SIDS. We need more studies that look at bed sharing, breast feeding, and hazardous circumstance that put babies at risk.