CELEBS are fuelling a rise in cot deaths by posting Instagram photos of babies sleeping in unsafe conditions, a charity fears.
Their pictures sometimes show babies sleeping in pods, nests or on soft surfaces, according to The Lullaby Trust.
Rex Features Kim Kardashian is one of the stars named as posting risky photos of their babies online
Kim Kardashian posted this photo of her sleeping baby — which could be ‘unintentionally promoting unsafe practices or products’
The stars are “unintentionally promoting unsafe practices or products” to millions, the charity says.
Kim Kardashian, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Hilary Duff and Amy Childs are among those whose tots appear to be asleep in risky positions.
The number of cot deaths in the UK among babies younger than 12 months rose from 216 in 2015 to 240 in 2016, official figures show.
The cause of sudden infant death syndrome is not known. But the charity, which educates parents on safe practices for sleeping children, warns babies should be laid on their back on a firm, flat mattress to stop them overheating.
Getty – Contributor Amy Childs’ spokeswoman said the guidelines were unclear and added: ‘Child safety is always at the forefront of her mind’
Pillows, cot bumpers and soft bulky bedding should be avoided, says the charity
There should be no cushioned or raised areas or anything that straps or holds them in position.
Pillows, cot bumpers and soft bulky bedding should be avoided.
Sleeping babies on soft surfaces can cause overheating, a risk factor for SIDS, or can obstruct their breathing if they roll.
Jenny Ward, acting chief executive of The Lullaby Trust, said: “In the age of social media, celebrities have more influence than ever over parents and consumers. It is important for them to keep in mind that their photos might be unintentionally promoting unsafe practices or products.”
Many products used by stars are sold on the high street but do not comply with evidence-based safer sleep advice.
CELEBS FEATURE PRODUCTS THAT AREN’T RECOMMENDED
Some celebrity baby photos feature products, such as pods or nests, that are not recommended.
Jenny added: “It is known that the products featured in celebrity photos tend to become popular with consumers.
“Parents are already faced with an overwhelming number of baby products and working out what to buy for a new baby can be difficult and confusing.
“Many people make the reasonable assumption that if an item is used by a celebrity and sold on the high street it is OK for their baby. However, we know that this is not always the case.
“It is vitally important that parents are aware of advice on how to sleep their baby safely. If all parents had access to this information many lives could be saved.
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“However, images depicting celebrities sleeping their babies unsafely give mixed messages to parents and make this task much more difficult.”
Amy’s spokeswoman said the guidelines were unclear and added: “Child safety is always at the forefront of her mind.”
A spokeswoman for Hilary did not wish to comment.
Representatives for Kim and Sophie failed to respond to calls and emails.
Getty Images – Getty Sophie Ellis-Bextor is also among celebs who have posted ‘risky’ pics of sleeping babies
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