When you have a little one on the way, there’s no doubt on your mind that you want to do everything that you possibly can. It’s not just to ensure their comfort but also to help ensure their safety. There are various ways that you can do that.
You may be surprised to be finding such an article on a website that promotes safety against lead paint exposure. Still, the reality is there’s a reason why we’re writing this article.
While we want to ensure the safety of those most at risk, we also want to make sure that you are taking the necessary precautions in general.
With that being said, many consumer products on the market don’t live up to the safety guidelines. It means that they may have a bunch of chemicals in them that aren’t approved.
Until it is discovered, they will be filling our homes with unnecessary chemical exposure and exposure to heavy metals such as lead and lead paint.
The importance of good sleep is imperative for proper development. You have probably had days in your life where you could tell them you haven’t had sufficient amounts of this miracle drug to be functioning at an optimal level.
For kids, sleep is even more important than for adults. It is why they will additionally sleep significantly longer hours than most adults end up doing.
There are too many accidents with babies dying unexpectedly. In many cases, it isn’t even possible to come up with a reason why it happened.
There is a term that has been coined – SUDI. SUDI stands for “sudden unexpected death in infancy,” which can surely happen when a baby is sleeping as well.
Luckily, it is a thing that has become significantly less of an issue than it was in the past. There are still many reasons you should follow the guidelines on safe sleeping for newborns.
With the help of these tips, we’ll lower SUDI even more. Let’s help protect your smallest family members against the hidden dangers they are currently exposed to. It’s perhaps without you even knowing that it’s the case.
Here’s a bunch of tips that you should implement to help increase the safety of your baby’s sleep, thereby lowering the risk of SUDI.
1. You should always make sure that they are sleeping on their back.
For healthy babies, sleeping on their backs is an important step. It avoids the suffocation risks associated with other sleeping positions.
Only when they can navigate the bed on their own will you be able to let your baby determine what position they’re comfortable sleeping in.
SUDI often occurs because babies end up in sleeping positions where they cannot breathe. After all, they have yet to develop the ability to roll over. It usually happens around the age of 4-6 months.
2. The face should naturally not be covered as they’re going to sleep, nor should there be a risk that that could happen by accident.
Things like bedsheets should be securely tightened to not accidentally cover anything they shouldn’t be covering.
There are specific products that have been made available such as the safe infant sleeping bag. They are intended to replace blankets and significantly reduce the risk of anything accidentally covering the head.
At that point, they would be at risk of suffocating. Your baby’s feet must be near the bottom end of the cot as well. You’re positioning them and making them ready for a bunch of z’s.
3. Don’t smoke in the house.
There are many things that you shouldn’t be doing during pregnancy. You shouldn’t be doing many things after your baby is born, either.
Ideally, make sure that the baby doesn’t get exposed to the harmful chemicals in making cigarettes to keep them from exposure. Second-hand smoke isn’t good for anyone, especially not babies. It can both affect your kids’ development and can also lead to SUDI.
4. Make sure that you only get a mattress for your kid that lives up to the various safety guidelines.
It’s very important that you not only buy a cot or a mattress that lives up to the rigorous safety guidelines that are instituted in the United States. Be equally rigorous in ensuring that you aren’t getting any materials that could potentially hurt your baby.
You may have found a website that offers a bunch of products slightly cheaper than you would be able to find them for from a more reputable site.
The truth is that you’re exposing your baby to unnecessary harm when you’re buying these sorts of products. Get them from a source you know is safe to buy from.
Safety standards have been instituted in the United States for a reason. It includes various safety standards concerning lead paint in consumer products.
The use of lead paint in consumer products was severely limited in 1992. At that point, it was practically banned for the purpose.
It doesn’t mean that other countries have nearly the same regulatory bodies that ensure that the dangerous addition to paint is being avoided.
Consequently, there are often recalls of products coming from foreign manufacturers when they prove unable to follow the rules set by the United States.
In addition to not meeting the safety guidelines for the inclusion of lead paint, there are also other safety standards concerning cots.
These prevent babies from getting trapped in the gaps. They govern how tall the sides must be to protect a curious child who wants to crawl around.
Having sides that are too low could lead to dangerous falls as the baby starts exploring the limitations of the cot.
5. Sharing a room with your baby
It’s very much so encouraged you to sleep in the same room as your baby. It’s especially in the early stages where they aren’t yet ready to roll around when they find the need to.
The recommendation is to share a room for the first year of their life. It means you may be sleeping in the same room as them for slightly longer than it will take for them to roll over. It is just a safety measure considered.
Have you ever imagined that this simple act of providing the nutrients to your baby might be helping to keep the risk of SUDI at bay? Yes, there are indications that it may help.
7. Keep away any type of object that could end up obstructing the sleep ways.
There are a couple of reasons you want to ensure that you don’t include various objects in the cot.
It’s not just the risk of suffocating on these objects that will help keep you feeling at ease when you put them to sleep. It will also help avoid the risk of them overheating.
Parents often want to put some of the common objects in the cot but really shouldn’t include soft toys and pillows. It includes doonas and mattress padding, too. Anything that is a soft object that could potentially get in the way should be removed.
This is the perfect moment to also mention to you that we have a bunch of other articles focused on improving the safety of your newborn. It includes various articles on additionally improving your family’s safety.
Many of these safety tips are especially important when you have kids in the house and even more so when you have young kids in the house. These are the ones that are the most prone to the environmental impacts that we are exposing them to.
Suppose it’s the first time that you have visited Check4Lead’s website. You probably don’t know that we have other articles protecting your family against lead exposure. We have articles on general things you need to know about lead paint. We also have articles on some of the risks you are walking into if you’re buying a 50-year-old home.
Assuming you know what you’re doing. You’re both doing the necessary testing and making sure that any old paint remains in good condition. There isn’t a good reason why you shouldn’t be able to buy a 50-year-old home if that is really what your dream is.
They will often suffer from bad indoor air quality and other things when that’s said. If you have children living there, make sure you have these things addressed before moving your family into the place.
Either way, you can check those things out at your convenience. If you choose to learn more about it, you can read the various articles posted.
We have an entire blog section where you can keep reading these safety-focused articles. Such articles will often have lead exposure as the core of their focus, as it’s a huge issue in the US.
Let’s get on with the remainder of the article.
8. Make sure that the mattress that your baby is sleeping on is both firm and well-fitting.
You will want to ensure that the mattress you choose for the cot doesn’t have gaps between the frame and the mattress. It is a place where a small child’s head could easily end up getting jammed and suffocate.
Double mattresses on your bed should be avoided, as should mattresses that aren’t firm. These pose the same dangers that soft objects in the cot do.
9. Avoid letting them sleep on other surfaces that they aren’t intended to sleep on which could include couches.
Makeshift couches and other surfaces are ones where you might consider letting your baby sleep. There isn’t a good reason for you to do so, given the obvious dangers of subjecting your baby too.
Remember how we previously said you should ensure that your baby sleeps on a firm mattress? Well, that is not a couch.
10. Dress them appropriately as you’re putting them to sleep.
You wouldn’t leave your dog in a hot car where the sun is shining down on for several hours as you go and run errands.
Why would you ever consider not dressing your baby appropriately as you’re putting them to sleep? Babies deserve the same attention as others, which means you have to ensure that there isn’t a risk of overheating.
Sure, you should be making sure that your baby is wearing warm clothing that will keep them from freezing through the night. Overheating is one risk factor for SUDI, why appropriate clothing for sleep is massively important. You probably know that you wouldn’t be jumping into bed wearing a ski outfit.
If you put your baby to bed in something that resembles that, overheating suddenly becomes a potential hazard as well.
Would you wear the clothing you put your baby to sleep in? If so, the heat level is probably appropriate. If not, you might want to reevaluate the situation.
11. Make sure that anyone who takes care of your baby has read these many tips before being put in charge
You might be the one putting your baby to sleep most of the nights. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be the one doing it every single night.
Maybe someone else is doing it for one night. Make sure to have them go over this article to be properly equipped for the challenges you face in caring for a newborn.
12. The crib that you are using should live up to all the standard safety requirements
Besides other things, get your crib from a reliable manufacturer. Choose one in the US to know that all the various manufacturer requirements have been met.
Suppose you are buying one that has been imported. The manufacturer must live up to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission standard requiring stronger compliance after 2011.
In the same way that the EPA requires homes to be tested for lead paint, there are requirements for cribs. Cribs made after these more stringent rules require that a crib have the manufacture date.
It makes it easier to trace bad cribs back to a manufacturer. It helps ensure that you use a crib, where stronger safety measures have been put in place.
The good news is that you aren’t allowed to sell a crib made before that time. If your solution to finding a crib is going on Craigslist to see what used options are out there, ensure any crib has this label on it.
Before you decide to buy one, make sure that it doesn’t come from a manufacturer that has had to recall a bunch of cribs either. Places like Keeping Babies Safe are a great place to figure out if the specific one you have been looking at has been recalled.
You may not have known is that CPSC estimates that there isn’t just a small number of unsafe cribs lurking around out there. That number is 20 million.
When you start browsing the website, you will see even some bigger names on the list. Cribs are being recalled for various things.
For instance, IKEA has had to recall a bunch of crib mattresses that violated the Federal Flammability Standard back in 2015.
Related to the actual crib, Baby’s Dream has had to recall cribs and furniture because they weren’t living up to the lead paint standards. It happened the same year.
We would like to believe that our youngest ones are safe from exposure to this harmful kind of paint. It’s simply not the case in many instances.
This is the case even if the relevant legislation dates back as far as 1992. Only then was the use of this paint limited in consumer products.
At least it’s the case that these cribs are slightly less dangerous, stemming from the fact that they have to be labeled. That legislation is only relevant as long as they have been made after 2011.
We are very much in favor of initiatives that help sustainability. There is no denying that poorly built cribs and ones that do not live up to the various requirements in terms of lead paint pose a significant threat.
It’s not just cribbed that are the offenders here. There are actually 11 million units that have had to be recalled between 2009 and 2011. It includes cribs, bassinets, and play yards.
Our recommendation remains that you need to throw these things out rather than buy something manufactured before 2011.
13. Don’t share a bed with your baby
While it may be tempting to have your baby by your side as you are about to fall asleep, we strongly discourage it.
As you find yourself getting closer and closer to sleeping, you must make the safe choice and put your baby in either the crib or the bassinet. Do it rather than having them share the bed with you.
While it may seem like a minor thing, there is a very inherent risk of suffocation when your baby hasn’t been properly secured in their bed.
That includes making sure that you aren’t putting them at risk of being suffocated if you accidentally roll on top of them.
14. Make sure the temperature is right where they are sleeping and avoid certain accidents
If you have a fireplace, that can both be a fire hazard if your child’s clothing would accidentally catch fire. Still, you will also want to ensure that the temperature is right when your baby is put to sleep.
If you are a person who is reluctant to use the air conditioner in the summer or the heater in the winter, you should consider doing so. Do it even if for nothing else than the safety of your child.
The best range to keep the temperature when your baby falls asleep is between 65 degrees F and 74 degrees.
Remember that your baby is always at your mercy to ensure that they are sleeping at a comfortable temperature. They cannot remove clothing the same way you can if the situation calls for it.
Perhaps you may be a person who will naturally not need to have the heater on for most of the day. Your baby won’t always tell you when they need it, either warmer or colder.
Make sure that the temperature is right and comfortable. You ensure that your baby is safe. He’ll also be sleeping better and hopefully longer. That’s the dream of any new parent!
We hope you enjoyed this article, although it may have strayed away from our usual focus on dealing with lead paint issues.