Pregnant women wanted for new baby study

Monday, 14 April 1997

A new study into the sleeping patterns of newborn babies hopes to unravel some of the mysteries surrounding SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).

Called 'The Adelaide Baby Study', it investigates how factors in the home affect the development of a healthy sleeping pattern in newborn infants.

The study, being conducted by the University of Adelaide's Department of Physiology in collaboration with the Centre for Sleep Research, is unique in that it looks at normal sleep development in the home rather than in a laboratory environment.

Researchers are currently seeking 120 expectant mothers from the Adelaide metropolitan area who would be willing to take part in this non-invasive study.

Parents will be asked to...

  • complete a short questionnaire about the details of their baby's birth, parental smoking and other background information
  • complete a 24-hour diary of their baby's sleep-wake pattern and sleeping environment once a week for a period of 6 months
  • record a description of their baby's clothing and bedding during that time

Physiology researcher Dr Pat Buckley said decisions about how and where a baby sleeps were major factors for new parents.

"Evidence suggests that different child care practices influence the development of children's sleep. So what we're hoping to do is to get a clear understanding of the total sleeping environment that a baby is placed in, from the type of clothes they wear, to the type of bed they have, and where and when they sleep," Dr Buckley said.

She said there was much debate about these factors as they related to SIDS, which was why the study had been funded by South Australia's SIDS Research Foundation.

Details of people's identity and responses to the questionnaires and diary will be kept in the strictest confidence and will not appear in the final results of the study. The diary will be returned to parents for their keepsake.

Women who would like to participate in The Adelaide Baby Study can phone Rachael Rigda on (08) 8303 3729 or 0414 986 116 (mobile) for more details.


Contact Details

Ms Robyn Mills
Media and Communications Officer
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 6341
Mobile: +61 410 689 084

Mr David Ellis
Deputy Director, Media and Corporate Relations
External Relations
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5414
Mobile: +61 (0)421 612 762