swings and slings can be dangerous things
A new study underlines the importance of not putting babies to sleep in car seats, swings, bouncers and other carrying devices.
In the study, researchers reviewed 47 deaths among children younger than age 2 that occurred in sitting and carrying devices and were reported to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission between April 2004 and December 2008.
All but one of these deaths were caused by asphyxiation. Two-thirds of the deaths occurred in car seats, and 52 percent of those deaths were caused by strangulation from straps. Five deaths occurred in slings, 4 each in swings and bouncers, and 3 in strollers.
The study concluded that infants and children 2 years of age and younger should be properly restrained and not be left unsupervised in sitting and carrying devices. Car seats should not be used as sleeping areas outside of the vehicle, and children should never be in a car seat with unbuckled or partially buckled straps (remember the pinch test for car seats). Researchers also suggested that infants in slings should have their faces visible and above the edge of the sling, should not have their faces covered by fabric, and their chins should not be compressed into their chests.
As Baby Saunders #2 enters the world, this study serves as a good reminder. Of course, we have a car seat, swing and bouncer for the baby but it’s important to remember that these devices might serve a purpose – but aren’t safe for sleep or for times without supervision.