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Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS), Abusive Head Trauma (AHT), & Non-Accidental Trauma (NAT)

What are AHT and NAT?

        At least ½ of the American public doesn’t know that shaking a baby can cause blindness, cerebral palsy (CP), hearing loss, seizures, learning and behavior problems, seizures, paralysis, severe and permanent injury to the brain and/or spinal cord, and even death. Many of NMSBVI’s visually impaired students are the victims of Non-Accidental Trauma (NAT) caused by adult anger.  NAT is 100% preventable.

Click here to watch a video on SBS.


“Handle with Care” Awareness Campaign

     NMSBVI strives to increase public awareness about NAT through a campaign entitled “Handle with Care”.  NMSBVI staff will provide training on SBS and its impact on development and vision to communities throughout New Mexico.  "Never Shake a Baby" car magnets, brochures, and rack cards with tips on how to soothe a baby are also available in English and Spanish.


For more information:


Jessica Pickard, LCSW, DS III

NMSBVI Developmental Specialist




20 Tips to Soothe a Crying Infant:

(courtesy of the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome

Crying is the #1 trigger for SBS/NAT.Crying does not mean that there is anything wrong with you or your baby.If you start to become frustrated, put your baby in a safe place, walk away, and calm down.

The following list is not all-inclusive.There are many things you can do to calm a baby’s crying.Many of these techniques may work, but not all techniques work all of the time.Just keep trying and remember…never, never, never shake a baby.

•  Feed your baby. Hunger is often the main reason a baby cries.
•  Burp your baby. Gas can be very uncomfortable.
•  Swaddle your baby in a lightweight blanket.
•  Give your baby a lukewarm bath, under supervision.
•  Massage your baby gently on back, arms, or legs.
•  Give your baby a pacifier. (Use sparingly!)
•  Make eye contact with your baby and smile.
•  Kiss your baby.
•  Lightly kiss the bottom of your baby’s feet.
•  Sing Softly. Lullabies were created because of their effectiveness at calming crying babies.
•  Reassure your baby with soft words like “it’s ok.” (This can help comfort both you and your baby during a difficult crying episode.
•  Hum in a low tone against your baby’s head.
•  Run a vacuum cleaner to create distracting “white noise.”
•  Run the dishwasher; more comforting “white noise.”
•  Take your baby for a ride in the car, with baby secure in a rear-facing car seat in the back seat.
•  Rocking with your baby in a rocking chair can be very relaxing for you both.
•  Push your baby in a stroller.
•  Place your baby in a baby swing for a slow, rhythmic motion.
•  Place your baby underneath a lighted mobile.
•  Dance Slowly... and relax!


For Immediate Assistance:



1-800-4-A-CHILD  (1-800-422-4453)

For more information:


National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome


UNM Children’s Hospital SBS Information & Tips


UNM Health’s Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention & Awareness Program


CYFD Support, Guidance, & Resources for Parents:


Desiree Torrez, Infant Injury Prevention Consultant

Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention


Christopher Torrez, MD, FAAP

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
University of New Mexico Children’s Hospital

UNM Shaken Baby Syndrome Prevention and Awareness Program