Rutgers University and Microsoft Corporation are confident their cute and baby book inspired mobile app intended to reduce the risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) will make headway against this persistent tragedy.

The free mobile app is named "Baby Be Well." It offers new parents guidance on safe sleep practices to reduce the risk of SIDS. It's currently designed for Android devices. The app is now available on Google Play. An iOS version will follow shortly.

Rutgers said the app will help families keep the infant babies safe throughout the first year of life, which is when most deaths from SIDS occur. It developed the app through its proven guidance of safe sleep practices as part of its AI for good initiative.

To make using Baby Be Well enjoyable, researchers designed the app to be interactive. The app depicts and describes a safe sleep environment parents can view with each visit to the app. There are new tips of the day and a question and answer game where users test their knowledge and learn even more about keeping infants safe.

The baby book model was used to ensure continued promotion of safe sleep practices over time. It also means the app can be shared with friends and family.

“To encourage return visits, the app is designed as a traditional baby book where parents can upload photographs and milestones and even track day-to-day activities such as feedings,” Thomas Hegyi, a professor of pediatrics and involved in the app’s creation, said.

“Parents can share their personal account with grandparents and other caregivers, therefore, along with the keepsakes and schedules, recipients also receive safe sleep tips and reminders.”

Researchers focused on making the app an appealing and interactive experience to promote return visits and repeated exposure to the safe infant sleep guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics, according to Barbara Ostfeld, professor of pediatrics at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School at Rutgers University and one of the scientists involved with the app’s development.

“We found that those reminders help maintain awareness and adherence not only when a child is born, but throughout the first year,” Ostfeld said.

baby sleeping
Pink noise may help you have a better night’s rest, according to a new study. Photo courtesy of Pixabay