A parent must create the safest environment for babies. However, you find yourself constantly worrying about the status of your child, especially during naptime. There are a lot of threats that face newborn babies or babies under one year old, including Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). You can even find parents standing over their baby’s crib all night to confirm whether their infant is breathing.
But that doesn’t have to be the case, considering that there exist baby breathing monitors. A breathing monitor can give you peace of mind by allowing you to relax when your baby is sleeping. It detects and keeps track of your baby’s breathing and heart rate.
In this guide, we will compare two baby breathing monitors – the Owlet Smart Sock 2 Baby Monitor and the Snuza Hero (SE) Baby Movement Monitor, to determine the best model.
What is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)?
Sudden Infant death Syndrome is the sudden and unexplained death of an infant who is less than one year old, and it usually happens during sleep. It is also referred to as crib death. The cause of SIDS is currently unknown, but there is some factor that might make your baby more vulnerable to SIDS. Some of these factors include:
- Newborns that have brain abnormalities
- Infants that have a low birth weight
- Having a soft mattress or a lot of blankets in the baby’s crib
- Poor prenatal care during pregnancy
- Infants who have or recently had a respiratory infection
- Bad lifestyle habits by the mother during pregnancy such as smoking and using drugs
You can, however, take some steps to try and prevent instances of SIDS, albeit they aren’t completely unavoidable. Experts recommend letting your baby sleep on the back and reducing the number of blankets in the cot. You should also get a breathing monitor to keep track of your baby’s breathing.
If you have a baby, you know that naptime is one of the most anxious moments. Babies don’t have a constant breathing pace, and that is a factor that worries most parents. However, the breathing pace gets normal as babies grow older when they learn how to use their diaphragm to breathe. You don’t always have to worry yourself every time your baby falls asleep because you can rely on a breathing monitor. Let us have a close look at the Snuza Hero SE Baby Movement Monitor to see what it has to offer.
Snuza has been manufacturing baby movement monitors for over ten years now by relying on bio-sensory technology. Each item gets designed to alert you when your baby’s movement stops, which could be an indication of an irregular breathing pattern. And since babies cannot express themselves verbally, such a device keeps your mind at rest by allowing you to check on your baby when he or she is sleeping.
The Snuza Hero is a monitor that is meant to be attached to your baby’s diaper. Those who have used it for some time claim that it is quite reliable, with minimum false alarms. However, babies who are over 6 months old may trigger false alarms because they tend to move a lot.
The monitor also produces an audible tick sound when your baby makes movements, plus it also has an indicator light to notify you about the status of your baby. If no movement gets detected after 15 seconds, the monitor produces a gentle vibration to stimulate your baby to start moving. When it detects movements after the vibration, then the alarm will not sound. However, if no movements get detected after three vibrations, then it will sound an alarm to alert you to check on your baby.
That is quite a reliable feature because it gives you peace of mind, knowing that your baby’s breathing is good. Do note the alert works in the preset programmed mode of this monitor, but you can turn it off to alert you at different intervals. That notwithstanding, this monitor does not emit any electromagnetic field (EMF), and that makes it a suitable wearable device.
Do you travel with your baby often? If you do, then you don’t have a thing to worry about this monitor. Why? It features a compact design, which allows you to go with it anywhere. Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about it getting damaged because it has a hard case, which protects the sensor. You can also place it in a stationary location in your baby’s room to help you keep check of your baby at all times.
Alerts and alarms
The Snuza Hero SE is a monitor that comes with a sound alarm to warn you when no movement gets detected. Usually, it works in two stages. First, it gently vibrates to awaken your baby when no movement gets detected after 15 seconds. Next, the monitor sounds a loud alarm when your baby does not respond. The alarm comes 5 seconds later.
Additionally, this monitor got designed to alert you when your baby’s movements are weak, when the battery is low, and when it picks up less than eight moves per minute. If the monitor gets detached from your baby, the alarm will also sound to notify you. It is advisable to use this monitor when your baby is resting in the crib as compared to a car seat to prevent false readings.
The Snuza Hero SE features a simple construction. It comes as one wireless gadget, which you attach to your baby’s diaper. Keep in mind that this gadget does not connect to any other device via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. Are you wondering how you’ll receive alerts because the device doesn’t connect to other gadgets? Well, the sound alarm comes from the monitor itself.
The manufacturer has set the volume of the alarm at 80 decibels, which is loud enough for you to hear from outside your baby’s room. However, we would advise you to invest in a baby sound monitor, which you can move around with to notify you whenever the alarm sounds. Interestingly, this monitor has an impressive battery life of up to 2000 hours.
How does it work?
The Snuza Hero SE Movement Monitor is a great alarm that clips onto your baby’s diaper. The device rests on your baby’s tummy so that it can detect the slightest movements. If no movement gets detected after a specific period, the device sounds an alarm to alert you.
Ease of use
The Snuza Hero is quite easy to use because it comes as one device. The monitor also comes with batteries installed, which means that you can use it as soon as you purchase it. Furthermore, it does not require any setup. All you need to do is turn it on and attach it to your baby’s nappy. The monitor doesn’t have a complicated interface, which lets even a first-timer to use it with ease.
- It does not include wires or cables that could harm your baby
- It doesn’t emit any electromagnetic field
- Features a compact and portable design
- You can place it underneath your baby’s clothes
- Quite easy to use and set up
- Has a long battery life
- It vibrates to stimulate your baby
- It does not connect to a phone or other devices
- Not ideal for babies that sleep on their tummy
- Can easily get detached, making false alarms
- Not ideal for use in a car seat or rocker
If you need a baby breathing monitor, then you might want to have a look at the Owlet Smart Sock 2. This is a monitor that get designed with pulse oximetry to monitor your baby’s real-time oxygen saturation levels and heart rate. You might call it a worthwhile investment, especially if you have an infant who has respiratory problems or if your newborn was born prematurely. The manufacturer has designed this Owlet monitor to check on your baby more accurately compared to a video monitor.
The Owlet Smart Sock 2 is an impressive product that you can use to watch over your baby. The manufacturer gives you several color options for the sock that you could choose from – blue, mint, and pink. You also do not have to stress about your purchase because it comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee, which implies that you can return the product if it does not meet your needs.
- Inside the box, you will find the following:
- Smart Sock sensor
- Base station
- Charging cords
- Owlet App information, which is compatible with Android 4.4 and newer versions, and iOS 8 and newer
- 3 fabric socks
How to set up
Setting up the Owlet Smart Sock 2 is a seamless task. You need to download the Android or iOS app to your smartphone or tablet. After downloading the app, you will get guided on how to set up the monitor, including how to connect the base station to your Wi-Fi network.
You will have to answer some basic questions about your baby, and then set a range that best suits your baby. The sensor will fit into the sock, but you have to set the sock size that best suits your baby. Interestingly, putting the sock on your baby’s foot is not a hard task. You only need to wrap it around your baby’s foot. The sensor in the sock connects to the base station via Bluetooth, and it has a range of approximately 100 feet.
Ease of use
The Owlet Baby Monitor comes with comfortable socks, which are lightweight and soft. You can put them under your baby’s pajamas or socks during naptime. Keep in mind that this monitor is only meant to get used when your baby is sleeping to avoid slipping off as your baby moves around. Furthermore, you have to charge it daily so that it can monitor your baby.
Additionally, this monitor comes with three socks, which feature different sizes, allowing you to change as your baby grows. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about this monitor outgrowing your baby during the first year. Moreover, the socks are easy to wash and keep clean, considering how babies get messy. You also don’t need to worry about the electronic components about this monitor when washing because you can remove them whenever you want to clean the socks.
Alerts and alarms
The Owlet Baby Monitor get designed with a sound alarm, which will alert you when your baby’s heart rate and or oxygen levels are irregular. You will get alerts every time your baby’s heart rate goes above 220 bpm or below 60 bpm, and when the oxygen saturation levels go below 80%.
The sock, which you put on your baby’s foot has the oximeter, and it communicates to the base unit via Bluetooth. The base unit has an audible alarm, which sounds when anything is wrong, plus it also has a color that glows when anything is wrong.
The base unit has four colors. When you see a green light, it indicates that the device is working correctly and that all the readings are normal. In case the light turns yellow, and the unit produces a lullaby, it means that the sock is lost and cannot provide accurate readings, or it implies that the sock placement is incorrect.
When the light on the base unit turns blue and produces a soothing lullaby, it means that the bases station cannot communicate with each other. That could be because of signal loss, range, or low battery levels. If you see a red light, it means that your baby’s heart rate is too high or too low, or his or her oxygen saturation levels are too low. Usually, the red light gets accompanied by a loud alarm from the base unit.
When you purchase the Owlet Smart Sock 2, you can download a free application on your phone or tablet, which allows you to monitor your baby in real-time. You can also receive alerts on the application when the monitor detects irregular readings with your baby.
You can also connect your monitor to the Connected Care app to monitor your baby, but you have to pay for this app. The paid-for app can store your baby’s sleeping patterns in the alert history. Keep in mind that the free app functions on both iOS and Android devices, but the Connected Care app is only compatible with iOS gadgets. Moreover, the app only works on Wi-Fi networks.
Do note that if your phone stops connecting to the base unit, you will not receive any alerts. That comes as a disadvantage because when your baby is at risk, you cannot know, and that could have some serious repercussions. Some of those who use the phone application complain over poor customer service when they have problems working with the app.
How does it work?
The Owlet Baby monitor comes with an oximeter, which gets placed on the sock. The oximeter shines a beam of light through your baby’s skin, which detects the amount of infra-red light that’s absorbed under the baby’s skin. Keep in mind that this process is non-invasive and painless, and it works by detecting the number of heartbeats per minute, plus it calculates the amount of oxygen in your baby’s bloodstream.
For your device to work, you have to charge it by plugging it into the base station. The base station then connects into a standard electrical outlet. As mentioned previously, you have to charge the sock daily, and the charging process takes about three hours.
Does the Owlet Baby Monitor have false alarms?
Some of the parents who have used this monitor claim that it produces false alerts at times. However, the false alerts might be because the sock has lost connection with the base unit, or when the sock slips off your baby’s foot. Other than that, the device works incredibly.
- It has a smartphone application
- Let’s you monitor your baby remotely
- It’s easy to use
- It produces alerts when your baby has issues
- Comes with three socks in three different sizes
- Monitors your baby’s heart rate and oxygen saturation levels
- It’s portable
- Falls on the higher price range
- The customer service is wanting
- You have to pay for the Connected Care app
- You have to charge daily
- It is only usable it when your baby is sleeping