Research shows that overheating by blankets and quilts can be a risk factor for SIDS. Loose bedding can also increase the risk by nine-fold. A baby sleeping bag offers a safe alternative to traditional bed covers and keeps baby warm and comfortable during the night. A baby sleeping bag can be used from birth to 24 months of age.
Newborn babies are unable to regulate their body temperature and they may wake up too hot or too cold during the night or in the early hours of the morning. It provides an ideal micro-climate because it releases excess body heat and moisture when the room temperature rises and it captures and circulates warm air when the room temperature falls. Very active babies that wriggle out of their covers at night can lose core body heat, which makes it much harder for them to enter deep sleep. However, baby cannot wriggle out of her sleeping bag. Openings in the bag keep baby’s head and hands free and cool, which also helps to regulate her body temperature.
Such bag alleviates the need for bed covers, which can be a potential hazard if baby should get entangled in them. It allows baby to move and sleep safely and naturally as she would in the confined space of the womb. Baby can be picked up for a cuddle or a feed and settled back to sleep in the crib or cot with minimal disturbance.
With so many colourful designs and sizes to choose from, knowing which one will be just right for baby can be difficult. When contemplating a purchase, parents might like to consider the following guidelines:
o Choose a baby sleeping bag and tog rating (describes the warmth of the product) that is suitable for the season. For example, a tog rating between 0.5 and 1.0 will keep your baby cool in the summer, while a tog rating of 2.5 will keep your baby warm in the winter. If you buy one with a tog rating over 2.5 then your baby may get too hot. Avoid polyester or synthetic ones, which retain heat and moisture and sleeping bags with zips, which toddlers may be able to undo.
o Aim to keep the room temperature between 16°C and 20°C depending on the season. Adjust the level of clothing worn according to the temperature of the room and the time of year. For example, dress your baby in a nappy and vest in the summer and a bodysuit in the winter.
o If your baby is sweating or her tummy, back or chest feel hot, then adjust the temperature of the room or remove some of her clothing to allow her to cool down. Don’t worry if her hands and feet feel cool-this is normal (Department of Health, 2009).
o Select a sleeping bag that is suitable for your baby’s age, size and weight. If it is too big, your baby may slip inside the bag. If the it is too small, movement will be restricted. Make sure that the neck and armholes fit your baby correctly so that she does not slip in or out of the sleeping bag. Avoid ones with sleeves or hoods and never cover your baby’s head. Do not put your baby in a baby sleeping bag if she weighs less than 8lb 8oz (4kg).
o Avoid purchasing sleeping bag with an inbuilt quilt and do not cover it with extra blankets or a duvet as your baby will get too hot. If your baby comes into your bed, do not cover her with your duvet. A sleeping bag that is lined inside with 100% cotton fabric will keep baby snug and cosy and will allow excess heat and moisture to escape while she sleeps.
Extra safety tips:
o Cover the crib or cot mattress with a fitted sheet.
o Always put baby on her back to sleep.
Source by Ricardo Lumbardo