“risks for babies whose parents did not smoke or consume alcohol or drugs but who did sleep with their baby were not different from that for babies in a separate cot”

OK – another study clearing saying what those of us who ever actually looked at the previous studies that supposedly linked cosleeping in an adult bed with cot death knew already…
Cosleeping is not a risk factor for SIDS – alcohol, drugs, smoking and sofas are.
Researchers say “Firstly, it is not enough to advise against cosleeping on a sofa; health professionals must advise parents to avoid putting themselves in the position where this could happen.”
The important part of this research is that it bedsharing with a sober, non-smoking adult is as safe as sleeping in a cot. Sofas are dangerous. The two must not be mixed up.
Telling parents not to cosleep has resulted in MORE deaths because parents then fall asleep with the baby in unsafe conditions – such as on the sofa.
The research actually found that
1. Baby sharing a bed with a parent who does not smoke, and hasn’t been taking drugs or alcohol has the same risk of SIDS as a baby sleeping in cot.
2. There is a higher risk to babies sharing with an adult who has been drinking more than 2 units of alcohol or been taking drugs.
3. Sofas have a higher risk of SIDS
4. Deaths in cots have declined, because of advice to have feet at bottom of cot, and to sleep on their backs.
Messages about how to cosleep more safely are what is needed.

And finally a newspaper produces a cosleeping story that reflects the research they are writing about! Interviewed in the Guardian researcher Peter Fleming says “My view is that the positive message of this study is that it says don’t drink or take drugs and don’t smoke, particularly for breastfeeding mothers. We did not find any increased risk from bedsharing. It is a very different message from the one the media picked up.”
I feel sorry for Peter Fleming – why do the papers insist on misunderstanding his research.