, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 72-82
Date: 17 Dec 2010

Racial Differences in Trends and Predictors of Infant Sleep Positioning in South Carolina, 1996–2007


This paper examines racial differences in trends and predictors of prone and lateral infant sleep positioning among South Carolina mothers and infants. Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System data were used to analyze linear trends in prone, lateral, and supine infant sleep positioning among 14,648 mother-infant pairs from 1996 to 2007. Logistic regression models were used to examine the predictors of prone and lateral positioning among 9,015 mother-infant pairs from 2000 to 2007. From 1996 to 2007, white infants experienced a reduction in both prone and lateral positioning and an increase in supine positioning (28.2–66.7%), while black infants had smaller decreases in prone and lateral positioning and a smaller increase in supine positioning (22.6–47.1%) than white infants. Compared to births in 2000–2005, births after the explicit recommendation that infants not be placed in the lateral sleep position (2006–2007) were associated with decreased odds of lateral positioning among white infants (odds ratio [OR]: 0.66; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.51, 0.87) but not among black infants. The significant predictors of white infants being placed in the prone position were different from the predictors for black infants. Additionally, with regard to lateral sleep positioning, more significant predictors were observed among white infants than black infants. These findings suggest that efforts are warranted to increase the prevalence of supine sleep positioning, especially among black infants. Race-specific programs may efficiently reduce non-supine sleep positioning to help narrow racial gaps in sudden infant death syndrome.