Sunday, September 9, 2007

Flying Hugs and Kisses Helps Explain Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) to Kids

Current studies continue to indicate that Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) to be a leading cause of deaths for over 2,100 infants during the first year of life in the United States. As collaborative projects continue throughout the United States medical research arenas, searching to uncover the mystery of SIDS and affect positive outcomes for families, it becomes even more vital for professionals and families to come together, to not only support each other, but also to learn more about this silent unpredictable killer of babies.

October is National SIDS, Pregnancy, and Infant Loss Month.
Many efforts are taking place through out the United States to bring awareness about the need to find an answer to SIDS and to help provide services to surviving SIDS families. These collaborative projects need money in order to continue their efforts to find answers for SIDS families and to end SIDS for future generations. Please support any efforts made in your community to help bereaved SIDS families heal from their loss and to find a cure for SIDS.

It is my hope when SIDS silently strikes; we never forget there are siblings who enter the grief process with their parents and extended family members. Sometimes the grief and loss experience is too overwhelming and scary for parents to explain or give accurate information to their children of what happened to their baby brother or sister.

I wrote Flying Hugs and Kisses (Lifevest Publishing. 2006) to help explain in simple terms what happens when someone dies, what children may think and feel when they experience the loss of a baby brother or sister; and most importantly, to explain that there is life after death. The book gives children permission to enjoy their lives again.

Flying Hugs and Kisses, a fictionalized illustrated story, is for children who are able to comprehend written material concepts with the goal in mind, to provide a resourceful tool that would help parents and professionals help children develop healthy attitudes about grief and loss.

In 2006, it was translated into Spanish by a gifted and gracious translator, Lucero Tenorio-Gavin. The Spanish translation is titled, Besos y abrazos al aire, (Lifevest Publishing. 2006)

This year my latest publication, Flying Hugs and Kisses Activity Book (Lifevest Publishing. 2007) offers a message of hope for grieving families, which is designed to accompany the storybook, Flying Hugs and Kisses. The activity book has fun educational coloring and writing activities, games, and puzzles to help elementary age children answer questions about grief and loss with compassion and hope

The National SIDS/Infant Death Resource Center has selected Flying Hugs and Kisses' Spanish Language edition, Besos y abrazos al aire, (Lifevest Publishing. 2006) as a resource for grieving parents, their families, friends, and other caregivers. The English version was selected last fall, 2006. Http://www.sidscenter.org/BereavementSelectedResources.aspx#Spanish

Flying Hugs and Kisses won “The National Parenting Center 2007 Seal of Approval.” The National Parenting Center Seal of Approval report indicates, “Jewel Sample does a wonderful job of breaking down some of the confusing terms that children hear during times like these and celebrates the love and strength that family provides.” The National Parenting Center’s 2007 Seal of Approval full report is at tnpc.com.

Until research is able to predict and prevent Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, (SIDS), it is my hope that Flying Hugs and Kisses helps children and their families heal from their grief and loss.

October is National SIDS, Pregnancy, and Infant Loss Month.

Please support any efforts made in your community to help families heal from their loss and find a cure for SIDS.



What is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

**“SIDS is the diagnosis given for the sudden death of an infant under one year of age that remains unexplained after a complete investigation, which includes an autopsy, examination of the death scene (Center for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines), and review of the symptoms or illnesses the infant had prior to dying and any other pertinent medical and family history. Because most babies sleep in cribs, and therefore, most cases of SIDS occur when a baby is in a crib sleeping, SIDS is sometimes called “crib death." Cribs do not cause SIDS.” (First Candle/SIDS Alliance)

**SIDS is a MEDICAL MYSTERY

**Doctors are not sure about the prevailing cause of SIDS; this leaves American families in a state of ambiguity, searching for meaning.

**Yes, there is promising research evidence that suggests some SIDS babies are born with brain abnormalities that make the baby vulnerable to sudden death during the first year of life. However, there is NOT yet a way to predict or prevent SIDS.

**Current studies indicate that despite the proactive steps parents and caregivers take to reduce their baby’s risk of infant death, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) continues to be a leading cause of deaths for over 2,100 infants during the first year of life in the United States. Over 5 babies a day die somewhere in the United States of America of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

**SIDS is NOT child abuse.

**SIDS crosses all socio-economic boundaries.

**African American and Native American babies are 2 to 3 times more likely to die from SIDS than Caucasian babies.

**Male infants are more likely to succumb to SIDS than infant females.

For more information about SIDS or about Flying Hugs and Kisses please visit the links on the left of my blog page under the title, My favorite Blogs and Cyber-places.

Flying Hugs and Kisses Helps Explain Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) to Kids was written by Jewel Sample, Award-winning author of Flying Hugs and Kisses (2006), also translated: Besos y abrazos al aire (2006, Spanish edition) and Flying Hugs and Kisses Activity Book (2007)

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