Baby breathing monitors are effective gadgets that help you monitor your baby’s breathing and heart rate during nap time. We have even heard of parents purchasing these monitors, hoping to prevent SIDS. But do baby breathing monitors prevent SIDS? Well, read on to find out more about this condition and the effectiveness of baby breathing monitors.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is referred to as sudden and unexplained death, which occurs to a probably healthy baby who is less than a year old. Some experts also refer to SIDS as cot death because, in a majority of the cases, newborns pass away in their cribs.
SIDS often worries most parents, and it even keeps some awake during every nap time. The true cause behind crib death has not yet been established, but researchers have associated it with defects in part of a baby’s brain, which controls breathing and arousal from sleep. However, some aspects could put your baby at more risk of SIDS, but there are also some measures that you could put into place to protect your newborn from SIDS.
Causes of SIDS
As we’ve mentioned previously, the real cause behind SIDS is not known, but there exist sleep, environmental and physical factors that could predispose your baby to SIDS.
A mother can also influence a baby’s risk of SIDS during pregnancy. Some of the maternal risk factors include:
- Using drugs and alcohol
- Smoking cigarettes
- Poor prenatal care
- Mothers who are younger than 20
There are also other risk factors such as sex, whereby boys are at a higher risk of dying of SIDS compared to girls. Additionally, infants who are aged from 2 months to 4 months are more vulnerable. If your family has a history of babies dying of SIDS, then that might put your baby at greater risk of SIDS.
Sleep environmental factors
The sleep environmental factors surrounding your baby might also enhance the risk of SIDS. Some of these factors include:
- Overheating – if your baby is too warm when sleeping, then that might increase the risk of SIDS.
- Sleeping on the side or stomach – you should refrain from placing your baby in a position where he or she sleeps on the stomach. Such positions may bring about difficulty in breathing. It is recommended to let your baby sleep on the back.
- Sharing a bed – if your baby shares a bed with you, the siblings, or your pet, it increases the risk of SIDS.
- Sleeping on a surface that’s too soft –a soft mattress or fluffy pillow might inhibit your baby from breathing properly, resulting in You also need to avoid covering your newborn with too many blankets.
Can You Rely on a Baby Breathing Monitor Prevent SIDS?
The safety of your baby is paramount, and that is why most parents try everything to ensure that their babies grow healthy. Usually, a newborn’s breathing rate is irregular, and that might leave you worrying, thinking that your baby has a problem.
That is why baby breathing monitors have become such a popular option for parents to check on their babies’ breathing and heart rates constantly.
When should you use a breathing monitor?
A Breathing Monitor comes in handy for parents who constantly worry when their babies are sleeping. It is a device that can give you peace of mind, allowing you to have a restful sleep during your baby’s nap time. However, a breathing monitor is not a must-have gadget for your baby.
You should use a baby breathing monitor when your baby requires home oxygen to ensure that the breathing rate is okay. You can also use this device if your baby has serious breathing problems. Before you purchase a monitor for your baby, you are advised to consult with your pediatrician. In some cases, the pediatrician may advise you to get a home breathing monitor.
Keep in mind that a baby apnea monitor can be used at home or in a hospital environment. The majority of baby breathing monitors are fitted with a sound alarm, which alerts you in case your baby’s breathing, and heart rate is irregular.
There also exists models that feature video mode, which enables you to see your infant from a different room during nap time. However, you must know that there are different models, and each has unique features. As a result, you need to make a careful assessment before settling on a specific product.
What Can You Do to Reduce or Prevent SIDS?
Even if you cannot rely on baby breathing monitors to minimize the risk of SIDS, there are a couple of ways that you can rely on to prevent the risk of SIDS. Here are several that we found quite effective.
Mothers should always breastfeed their babies.
Breastfeeding your baby is one of the ways to minimize the risk of SIDS. Besides, breastfeeding your baby has numerous health benefits for the baby and mother alike. A baby that is breastfed is at a lower risk of SIDS than one who is not fed on breast milk. The longer you breastfeed your infant, the lower the risk. Ensure always to breastfeed your baby on his or her back.
Mothers should avoid some habits.
During pregnancy, a mother should ensure to get adequate prenatal care. Moreover, you should avoid drinking alcohol, smoking, or using other drugs during pregnancy. Furthermore, when your baby is born, you should avoid smoking near him or her.
Use a firm mattress.
When you are getting a crib for you, baby, ensure that the mattress that comes with it has a firm surface. Never choose a soft mattress for your baby’s sleep space. Moreover, the bedding that your baby uses should not be soft. A soft surface promotes a dangerous sleep environment for your baby because your baby is at a higher risk of entrapment, suffocation, strangulation, and SIDS.
Share a room with your baby.
Pediatricians recommend that parents share a room with their babies during the baby’s first year. However, this does not mean that your baby should sleep in your bed or on the couch. No. You should ensure that your baby has a separate safe sleep space such as a bassinet or crib. Ensure that the sleep surface meets all the safety standards. Having your baby in the same room helps you monitor him or her much easier.
A baby’s safety comes as a priority to any parent. That’s why you find yourself going through different measures to guarantee the health of your newborn. Most parents are worried about Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, and that’s why they take various measures to help avoid it.