Why sleep positioners are banned

Why not to use sleep positioners

To be honest I was a bit surprised when FDA and CPSC issued their warning for parents not to use baby
sleep positioners. I believed that baby sleep positioners made babies sleep more safely, that’s why I made my website in the first place.
Of course, there were always few negative comments about these products, but also a lot of parents were happy with using them.

So I was very interested to find out why they’ve banned them all of a sudden.

Well, as it seems, over the last 13 years CPSC and FDA got 12 reports of infants between 1-4 months old who have died when they suffocated in these positioners. Dozens of parents also reported how they have placed their infants on their backs or sides in sleep positioners, only to found them later in potentially dangerous positions inside or out the sleep positioners.

Companies who produced these products claimed that their products can reduce the risk of SIDS. However, currently there are no scientific evidence to back up these claims.
Additionaly, The American Academy of Pediatrics have been advising parents for some time to avoid any commercial
devices which are marketed to reduce the risk of SIDS

Therefore, there is no evidence that they can improve baby’s safety, and they can even be dangerous – as they have been known to suffocate babies when they are not able to move their face away from the bolsters.

So what can parents do to maximize their child’s safety?

Parents should rely on tested methods to reduce the risk of SIDS. Here are tips for SIDS prevention:

  • Sleeping on the back (put your baby to sleep on his or her back)
  • breastfeeding – recent study shows that breast feeding reduces the risk of SIDS by approximately 50% at all infant ages (Vennemann MM, Bajanowski T, Brinkmann B, et al. (March 2009). “Does breastfeeding reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome?”)
  • Secondhand smoke reduction – Avoid exposing the infant to smoke
  • use bare crib and a firm mattress – “Product safety experts advise against using pillows, sleep positioners, bumper pads, stuffed animals, or fluffy bedding in the crib and recommend instead dressing the child warmly and keeping the crib “naked.”*
  • using baby sleep bags (for example Merino Baby Sleep Bag) –

    “A study published in the European Journal of Pediatrics in August 1998 has shown the protective effects of a sleep sack as reducing the incidence of turning from back to front during sleep, reinforcing putting a baby to sleep on its back for placement into the sleep sack and preventing bedding from coming up over the face which leads to increased temperature and carbon dioxide re-breathing.”*

*For more details about SIDS and its prevention visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sudden_infant_death_syndrome

Alternatives to sleep positioners

Ok, let’s see two alternatives to baby sleep positioners.

1. Baby sleep bags

I already mentioned above, how a study confirmed baby sleep bag can reduce the risk of SIDS.

One such baby sleep bag with great feedback is Merino Baby Sleep Bag

2. Tucker Sling matress

For babies who need to be elevated, Tucker Sling Matress is a FDA registered product (as stated on official
website), which may be used for babies with GER/acid reflux or respiratory problems


End of baby sleep positioners?

Baby sleep positioners are history, as it seems.
On 29th September 2010, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Federal Drug Administration warned customers to STOP using sleep positioners.
Here is what they say:

Over the past 13 years, CPSC and the FDA have received 12 reports of infants between the ages of one month and four months who died when they suffocated in sleep positioners or became trapped and suffocated between a sleep positioner and the side of a crib or bassinet.
“The deaths and dangerous situations resulting from the use of infant sleep positioners are a serious concern to CPSC,” said CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. We urge parents and caregivers to take our warning seriously and stop using these sleep positioners, so that children can have a safer sleep.
“We want to make sure parents, health care professionals, and childcare providers understand the potential risk of suffocation and stop using infant sleep positioners.

Most stores I checked already withdrawn them from sale. So, is that the end of baby sleep positioners? Well, it certainly looks so.

But as I noticed, baby sleep bags are still on sale and they are still on the safe list.

We wrote about them before, so if you read our article you know that they are promoted as a sleeping product which reduces the risk of SIDS. Are they to replace the baby sleep positioners? Or will producers come up with a new product?

Well, will have to wait and see.

Till then, you can check out the Merino Kids Baby Sleep Bag.
Reviews of this product are extremely positive (it’s hard to find a review rated less than 5 stars). I really hope our children can be safe with this product.

Source:

http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10358.html


Get Free Baby Samples Online

Having a baby can get very expensive. Between paying off the hospital bills and then the food expensive and clothes, the cost of a baby can add up very quickly. Looking for deals and saving is one of the best ways to go when you have a baby. These days you can look in the newspaper for deals but you can also find great deals online and more so at azfreebies.net and if you browse around, you will find loads of free baby samples that you won’t find anywhere else.

Start saving today on baby formula, diapers and even on baby lotion. A free sample is one of the best ways to test out a product and see how your baby might like it. However, there are lots of other ways to save besides getting a free sample. You’ll find some coupons available and can get 50% off or more with a baby item.

Free baby coupons and samples online might even be a great gift idea. If you’re going to a baby shower or maybe even attending a baby’s birthday or christening then this is a great way to save. You can get them a nice gift without it having to cost you a lot of money. When you’re trying to save money it can be hard and more so if you need to buy gifts. Don’t stress out about the cost of the gift when you can save this way.

Enjoy either having a baby or being around a baby and really enjoy the baby without ever worrying about the cost of things adding up to much when you can save online. You might be surprised as to how much you can actually save when you start to look around and find some amazing deals on high end items. It doesn’t matter if you have just one child or if you have a lot. Children can get expensive regardless so saving as much money as you possibly can is the best way to go and this is one of the easiest ways to save.


5 Ways To Curb Messy Eating

We’ve all had some experience with little ones before. As far as I know, we were all one at some point, or have had one or a few of our own to handle. Whatever our experiences may be, at some point in time, we either were the messy eaters, or have had time cleaning up after messy eaters.

Well, a lot of advice has gone around, and as always, you have those sources that are “on point”, and yet there are those that pop up who seem just to “not get it”. I mean, it seems like they’re giving advice that caters to children that come from another planet or something!

So, what we want to do is give you some tips and advice to help with messy meal time with your kids.

So here goes…

Plan For The Worst

Fact is, most times it’s best for you not to have overly idealistic expectations when you approach anything, and this principle really shouldn’t change when it comes on to dealing with our kids. At the end of the day, if you plan and prepare for the worst possible outcome (though, of course we can’t predict them all), then when the worst actually does happen, you’ll not only “pat yourself on the back” for having thought it through and avoided a worse outcome, but you’ll literally feel less stressed and upset. You’ll actually feel relieved that you had foreseen what happened, or at least something close to it.

For example, it’s probably best if we just admit that all baby’s “spit up” and “dribble” at some point. It may be an accident, or it may very well be that they’re having a rough day, or might not even like the particular dish that you’ve concocted for them that day, and they’re likely to show you, if you know what I mean.

So, the best thing you could do for that particular situation, is to arm your baby with the best baby bibs you can find, I especially like baby bibs with snaps so they can’t easily pull them off. . One that not only has super absorption skills, but one that is also wide, so that it can catch all those spills, and is also easy to put on to your baby. There are a lot around, and it’s wise to actually do a little research, or ask another parent you know, who has been using a reliable kind. You should also try to get a good stain remover!

Shorten That Mealtime

Hey, I know you really look forward to that one-on-one time with your little kiddo, but sometimes it’s just the right thing for you to shorten the time that the both of you actually spend feeding and eating respectively. You can do this by reducing your kid’s portions to only what he or she can manage, giving him or her medium-sized portions, and maybe keeping some on the ready in a handy container, so that if he or she needs a bit more, you can always feed them with the reserves.

Shortening mealtime will not only cut your and your baby’s stress levels in half or more, but it will train your child into eating with more discipline. Make sure that he or she is actually hungry, so that there won’t be any frustration in trying to get them to eat! And also, make sure that they’re properly seated in that high chair. This will make sure that food and drink spills will be far less likely.

When your kid realizes that mealtime won’t be a time for him or her to just start throwing things and playing with whatever you’ve given him or her to eat, without actually eating it, then he’ll “straighten up” his eating style, and realize that you’re only gonna feed him when he’s hungry, and that it’s not just “another kind of playtime”.

Use Special Mealtime Tools

Now, don’t get into the trapped thinking pattern that says you should stick to whatever your parents or their parents, or your friends do with regard to feeding and overall parenting practices. If you, for yourself, don’t think that a particular, traditional method doesn’t work for you in getting your kid to eat without making a mess, then it’s about time you did the proper research, and found better and more effective solutions that neither frustrate you nor your baby!

baby bibsNow, I personally think that the right baby bibs with snaps are the perfect and probably most effective solution to dealing with your enthusiastic baby’s eating style.

Along with your baby bibs with snaps, there are a host of many other solutions that can really elevate the standard of feeding your baby! Have you ever thought of using section plates that have suction cups at the base of them? These make for a hassle-free mealtime, as the cups won’t be knocked off the table and also, it makes this “eating thing” much easier and really interesting for your little one.

Serve Less Messy Food

I know I know, you’re a spaghetti and meatballs fan, so you want your kids to be as well, right? Lol, well even if that’s not your excuse, sometimes we just need to lay off of the food that’s downright messy and hard for your kid to eat and manage!

Try foods that are compact, like oatmeal and applesauce. Finger foods are also a great solution, ‘cus you’ve already eliminated the trouble of them trying to work with a mature knife and fork, or even a spoon! If it’s naturally meant to be eaten with the fingers, it’s likely to be easier for your kid to pick up and put in their mouths, rather than them turning everything that’s “stainy” and meant to be eaten with “grown-up cutlery”, into their own versions of “finger food”. You can even put easy-to-handle fruits, like grapes and apple slices, into small suction-cup bowls, which are not only easy and cool for your baby to pick up and eat, but are also healthy! How about even some baby carrots or cucumber slices?! Just make it simple, and make it agreeable to your kid.

Keep Your Cool

Probably the most important thing that you can do in improving your baby’s eating habits, is to actually model for them exactly how you would want them to react and behave. Instead of getting all frustrated when they throw a fit or a fuss, and maybe throw a food item or two, or start crying because they didn’t get what they wanted to eat, the best response you can have is one of cool, calm collectedness.

What you should do is say to them calmly, something like this, “No Megan, we don’t throw our food”, or “Would you like some more?” or maybe even say when they start an emotional tantrum, “We don’t cry when we want to have our own way”. Whatever calm response you come up with, make sure it’s said with an intent to educate and encourage your child to respond in the right way.

Getting mad at them when they’re already upset is just going to make matters worse. Keep your cool, and stay in charge, and you will be surprised at the marvelous results you create!


How to choose the best infant car seat

britax_b_safe-150x150It is one heck of a moment when we become parents. The only thing we can think about or we care about at that moment is our child. We focus all our energies in that direction and do everything possible for the betterment and the protection of our child. We make our home germs free, we bring n number of diapers and we bring all the modern and chic small baby towels. We make sure that everything falls in place and the baby is safe & secure. However, we should not forget about our car seats and we should choose an infant car seat that suits our child’s needs the best.

There are mainly a couple of things that one need to pay attention to while buying an infant car seat. We first need to see that the harness is provided in that infant car seat and we need to make sure that the harness is a strong one. Secondly, we need to see that the infant car seat has good quality foam that will comfort the child’s posterior. The infant seat also needs to have a cradle like shape so that the child is not only safe but is also engrossed in the cradle’s interiors.

Best infant car seat reviews website will help you pick the right seat for your infant. They have tested many different models, eg. the awarded Graco Snug Ride 35 and Chicco Key Fit 30. A lot of the best car seat reviews mention these two models at the top of the list. It is a good practice to read several reviews and buy class one infant seats that are number one in every best car seats 2014 review so that we provide our child a safe & sound ride.


Acid Reflux in babies

Acid reflux or Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) in infants is a condition where the infant spits out the contents of the stomach, usually shortly after feeding. Acid Reflux becomes less frequent as the baby grows older, and it is unusual if it occurs after the age of 18 months. GER is one of the most common feeding problems in infants, with nearly one fourth of the babies experiencing the same, with varying degree of severity. Acid reflux could range from mild (painless frequent spitting up) to severe (abdominal pain, colic and frequent night waking).

What causes Acid Reflux?

Lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is a circular muscle band that separates the esophagus from stomach. After feed, when the food enters the stomach from esophagus, the LES contracts and acts as a one way valve. This prevents the acids and other stomach contents from refluxing back into the esophagus. However, in some babies, the LES is not fully mature and it allows some of the stomach contents to be refluxed. This irritates the esophagus lining, resulting in pain that is known as heartburn in adults.

Effects of acid reflux

Mild form of acid reflux (which is more common) doesn’t pose any dangers as such. However, if the acid reflux is of severe nature, then it could result in damage of lining of esophagus and the health of the baby could be severely impacted. The baby may not be able to eat and may even stop gaining weight.
For more information about acid reflux, please read articles on http://heartburn.wisium.com

Symptoms of acid reflux in babies

Spitting up and vomiting are main symptoms of acid reflux in babies. If the acid reflux is of mild severity and as long as the baby is content, healthy and growing well, this condition is not a cause of concern. In such scenario, mostly the baby will outgrow this condition.
However, if the baby has severe form of acid reflux, the following symptoms will be visible:

  • The baby spits out content forcefully like a projectile
  • The baby spits out green or yellowish fluid or in worse cases blood
  • The baby refuses to take food
  • The health is impacted to such an extent that the weight is not gaining
  • There is blood in baby’s stool
  • The baby has difficulty in breathing
  • Begins vomiting after 6 months of age

In such severe conditions of GER, it is vital that proper medical attention is given.

Treatment and home remedies

There are various methods of treatment of acid reflux. If the acid reflux is of mild nature, then some simple home remedies can also help the baby. However, in case of severe form of acid reflux, doctor’s attention is required and medication needs to be given. In case of mild reflux, one can follow the following home remedies:

  • Using acid reflux wedge pillow can help prevent the acid reflux as the gravity will not allow the stomach contents to come out.
  • Natural Gripe water can be used to soothe the condition.
  • Frequent smaller feedings can help in preventing reflux, as reflux usually happens when baby’s stomach is too full.
  • While feeding and immediately after feeding, keeping the baby in upright position to prevent acid reflux.
  • Burping after feeding can help relieve the gastric pressure and can help in preventing reflux.
  • Thicken breast milk or formula by mixing rice cereal, as thickened food will not be generally spit up by the baby.

Organic vs. Non-Organic Food for Your Baby

Raising a baby isn’t an easy task and the food you give to your little one plays an important role when it comes to its health and growth. This is actually one of the main reason why many parents decide to go for organic baby foods, but are they really good for their babies?

Conventional Baby Foods (Non-Organic)

Most of the time, the conventional baby foods are prepared by cooking or pureeing fresh foods. The fruit used to make non-organic baby foods (in most cases apples) has actually been grown in conventional farms.

What makes the conventional baby foods so often preferred by parents is the fact that they are often less expensive than the organic ones. Furthermore, they come in a wide range of varieties, making it easy for the parents to feed their babies with different meals every day.

Organic Baby Foods

In order for any type of baby food to have an “Organic” label the manufacturer needs to ensure that the sources used for its preparation haven’t been treated with pesticides, antibiotics and any kind of growth hormones.

According to many health experts it’s important to limit the exposure of your baby to certain chemicals, while their brains and bodies are in early stages of development. This is why all organic baby foods also do not contain any preservatives, artificial flavors and colors.

When it comes to prices – the organic food is clearly more expensive than the conventional one. To be able to save some money when you want to feed your baby with organic foods, you should start shopping at specialized stores and also search for particular discounts.

It’s also important to mention that by giving only organic foods to your baby, you are actually taking a step to help the environment. Not treating the food sources with any of the chemicals above, helps reduce the pollution and also prevents some particular diseases from spreading, not only on babies, but on adults as well.

Is Organic Baby Food Truly Worth it?

According to various studies, one of the most notable among which is done by Mayo Clinic, giving only organic food to your baby can help reduce the dangerous effects of pesticides and other food contaminants. Exposure to these chemicals can seriously increase the health risks for your baby and in particular of neuro-development damages.

However, not all health experts agree that organic foods actually help to reduce the health risks for babies. A study from 2012 showed that in general the organic food is not more nutritious than conventional one. Furthermore, another study compared detectable pesticide residue from conventional and organic baby food samples, but didn’t manage to find any signs of pesticides in any of the samples.

Conclusion

Although it makes sense to feed your baby only with organic foods and avoid pesticides, it seems that each research done on the topic shows different and/or inconclusive results.

To make the best choice when it comes to organic and conventional baby food, it’s important to see what type of food your kid likes the most! For more information on baby foods, check out this great info-graphic titled “Parents’ Complete Guide to Baby Food” and find out more not only about organic and conventional baby foods, but also the main pros and cons of homemade and store-bought baby food.

Parents Complete Guide to Baby Food


Pregnancy Tips for Surviving your First Trimester

pregnancy_close-upIf you ask any new mother, they will say that the first trimester is usually the hardest part of being pregnant. However, anything difficult can be made easier with the right information. Here are some tips to make that rather awful first trimester of pregnancy become a lot more bearable.

Tip #1: Load up on at-home remedies

The health condition of pregnant mothers is very delicate. As such, they can’t take medicines for morning sickness and nausea in the same way that they used to. Fight that by asking your doctor what at-home remedies you can try that can alleviate morning sickness, but won’t affect the baby in your womb. Doctors would gladly recommend herbal teas, natural ointments, and the likes to help you ease the discomfort.

Tip #2: Take doctor prescribed vitamins

There are a few vitamins that doctors will recommend pregnant mothers for you to take. You have to take them regularly and never skip a dose. These vitamins nourish your body and make it more adaptable to the changes that pregnancy is about to bring.

Tip #3: Drink lots of water.

Water is every pregnant mother’s best friend. Be sure that your body is hydrated throughout the first semester and beyond. Water also helps your body adapt better. Make it a point to drink at least 9 glasses of water every day throughout the pregnancy period.

Tip #4: Light exercises can help.

Pregnancy can cause fatigue. Beat that by exercising even just a little every day. Moving around the house is already a good exercise. If you can still do brisk walking, do that regularly until your body gets used to the extra weight. The yoga and Pilates exercises for pregnant mothers may help as well.

5. Wear comfortable clothes

From undergarments to the clothes you’re wearing, be sure that they fit you just right. It’s important that your body gets adequate support while still feeling utterly comfortable. For starters, your waistbands shouldn’t be too tight. You may also have to shift to maternity bras this early.

You can find more pregnancy tips at: http://www.mommyedition.com/10-pregnancy-tips-for-surviving-your-first-trimester


Why and Where Should You Learn Infant CPR?

What do you think could happen if your baby suddenly chokes on his milk, unable to breathe at all? What if he suffocated during bath time? What can you do to revive him? How can you give first aid? Instead of allowing yourself to think about these scary instances, you should rather learn infant CPR.
All parents should know CPR. Even babysitters, aunts, uncles, and siblings should be taught about it too. CPR on infants has to be performed in such a way it effectively clears up the baby’s air passageways without compromising his frail and delicate body.

Why Learn the skill?

CPR could save a life. And training for it puts one in a better position, not just to save the life of an infant, but anyone else. After training, the presence of mind of the person who knows the skill will be drastically improved. Included in the training is the ability to act better during emergency situations.
Many parents will be thankful for knowing CPR for infants as it could make them feel better and more responsible parents at the very least. After all, learning the skill is not very hard to do. It takes just a little chunk of one’s time, yet it can make such a huge difference when the need for it arises.

Where to Learn?

Infant CPR is offered by different groups and health organizationstoday. In Florida, one of the most trusted training centers for this is CPR Florida. They operate in four different locations, namely West Palm Beach, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Coral Springs. Because of them, getting the proper CPR training has just become easier and more convenient.
CPR Florida teaches a few other certification courses from the American Heart Associations, Red Cross, and ASHI. They have been in operation for 14 years now and are proud of their educational yet fun teaching style. The classes are conducted in an environment that is very conducive to learning in order to help trainees acquire both the knowledge and the skills needed without feeling nervous, stressed, or rattled by any near-death situation.


When Can I Give My Toddler A Pillow?

With all the safety concerns regarding soft bedding items in cribs, you have to sift through a lot of changing opinions. According to CPSC.gov, “parents can safely start using pillows for children who are 1½ years old, about the same age at which parents can safely move children out of the crib and either into a toddler bed or onto a mattress on the floor.”

pillowMany leading child developmental experts agree that it’s best to allow toddlers to sleep on a flat surface. But at some point, your toddler may be more comfortable and sleep better with a pillow. When you do introduce a pillow, choose one that is firm, yet flat. Pick a toddler pillow that is the right proportions for a child’s head and neck – a standard size is a 12” x 16” toddler pillow. Always check with your pediatrician as he/she will know your child’s heath history including any issues that may impact sleep: allergies or asthma, muscle tone and neck/head control, etc.

How to buy a toddler pillow

My child seems ready to sleep with a pillow, how do I find a good toddler pillow?  Here are some tips:

  • Choose a toddler pillow that is in proportion to your child (12″x16″ is perfect!), and not overly filled.  Overfilled, fluffy pillows may seem cozy to adults and look nice on the bed, but your child is actually better off with a flatter, less filled pillow. 
  • Choose a quality made pillow with strong seams that will withstand machine washing and possible rough and tumble daily use by a toddler – you don’t want anything delicate or dry clean only!
  • Made in the USA – it’s always great to support local manufacturing!
  • We recommend a toddler pillow filled with high quality polyester fiberfill – it’s non-allergenic, easy to wash, comfortable yet supportive, and keeps its shape.  
  • We also recommend a high quality cotton fabric for the covering – some cheaper pillows are covered with very thin gauze like material – make sure you opt for thicker 100% cotton.
  • Pick out some fun printed pillowcases that will allow your child to get attached to the pillow and make nighttime fun! Don’t be so concerned with matching your child’s bedding or room theme - pick a design that your child really enjoys to make it more likely he/she will cuddle with the pillow. 
  • If your child has dust mite allergies, consider an allergen pillowcase.  In addition to blocking out dust mites and other allergens, it also offers an extra layer of protection between the pillowcase and the pillow to make washing easier.

Before introducing a pillow to your child at nighttime, check with your pediatrician and try to find a high quality, machine washable pillow that is in proportion to your child’s head/neck.  Don’t forget to make it fun and colorful too!
 

By Renee Sirulnik

Toddler Pillow Expert and Owner, BobbleRoos. BobbleRoos is a manufacturer of baby, toddler, and preschool bedding related items such as playard sheets, crib sheets, toddler pillows, daycare nap mat sheets and more. BobbleRoos can be found at www.BobbleRoos.com.