Safety Products You Should Splurge On
Yes, I am that mom. The overprotective, constantly scared of doing something wrong, freak out over a sneeze, type of mom. I am not ashamed to admit that I have sat next to my son’s crib, listening intently to his every breath because I’ve decided that he has been asleep for too long. So yes, I take my son’s safety seriously. I’m willing to pay for it, too. Yet, I’m still very aware that there are some baby safety devices that aren’t worth a hefty price tag, and some that should be skipped altogether. Here are my picks for what products you should splurge on, save on, and just forget about.
Baby Safety Products You Should Splurge On
1. Baby Monitor
One of the most important products for your baby is the baby monitor. Although the needs of your baby are important, a baby monitor is more about what you’re looking for. For parents who can’t sleep because they’re worried about SIDS, the Angelcare Baby Monitor is the answer.
With a $150 price tag, it is not cheap. But, it has three primary features that make it worth the money.
First of all, Angelcare monitor will show you a live video feed of your baby during the day or at night, thanks to night vision. Second, it includes a sensor that goes under your baby’s mattress to monitor for motion, or lack thereof. This is really what sets this device apart from others. Even after researching all of the highest rated security and camera options available, I decided this one Angelcare feature was absolutely critical to my peace of mind. This system will actually sound an alarm if no movement is detected (it can sense even the slightest movement, like breathing). Finally, it includes a two-way feature. Sometimes a soothing word is all it takes to get your baby back to sleep.
2. Pool Alarm
Another important area of safety is the pool. There were 4,900 pool/spa related injuries treated by emergency services for children under 15 between 2011 and 2013.
Even if you don’t have a pool, chances are you and your loved ones will be around a pool at some point in time. That’s when pool alarm bands come in handy. There are several different brands available, but they all use the same principle. Your baby wears a bracelet, and an alarm goes off if the band gets wet. The Safety Turtle 2.0 costs $149.99. It may seem expensive for a device that you won’t use every day, but it can be a lifesaver.
Baby Products You Can Save On
You can’t always have your baby in your arms, so for those moments when you are detached from your little one, you need a reliable playpen. Believe it or not, some playpens cost well over $200. Does this high price tag come with extra safety features? Nope. They look a little fancier than the $70 versions, but there is no evidence that suggests a higher price tag playpen will be safer for your baby.
For under $80, you can get the Summer Infant Pop ‘n Play Portable Playard. It collapses easily for traveling and works both inside and outside.
2. Car Seat
In this first-time mom’s humble opinion, car seats are the number one child safety device. So, you may be wondering why I have them in the “save” category. The truth is, all car seats must meet rigorous safety standards. An $80 car seat has met the same safety standards as a $500 car seat. Some car seats are more convenient to use and look more luxurious than others, but your child will be safe in an affordable seat.
When shopping for a car seat, look for features like a 5-point harness, head impact protection, and high weight limits. For a balance of convenience, comfort, and cost, the Britax Roundabout G 4.1 is a good choice. This convertible car seat retails at about $180.
Baby Products to Forget About
Some baby safety products aren’t much use at all. They end up collecting dust in your closet, or being used as a chew toy for your teething loved one.
1. Baby Helmet, kneepads, and elbow pads
When babies start crawling around, they end up hitting anything and everything in their path. I’d find it hard to believe that there is a single baby in the world who hasn’t hit his head on something. But, a baby helmet isn’t a necessary piece of safety equipment (unless it’s for a medical condition). Babies are tougher than you think. Keep an eye on your child and, although you may cringe a few times when she narrowly avoids bumping into the wall, she’ll be fine.
The same is true of kneepads and elbow pads. Crawling around on the floor is what babies do, and they don’t need protection. As nice as it would be, we can’t wrap our children in bubble wrap and prevent them from being hurt.
Call me old-school, but I don’t think a special mucous removal tool is necessary to keep my baby from choking on his mucous when he’s not feeling well. If you’re not familiar with it, the Nosefrida is a long tube that you stick in your child’s nose. You suck on the other end of the tube, and suck out the mucous (it has a filter to protect your mouth from anything you suck out).
Instead of using this crazy-looking contraption, you can use the bulb that they give new parents at the hospital. It does the same thing, with less effort and cost.
Still Don’t Know What To Buy?
If you’re still confused, take a deep breath and relax. Being a parent is a learning experience, and you need to take things one day at a time. Make a list of the baby safety products you want. A car seat and baby monitor should be at the top of the list. Write down all of the features that are most important to you, and look for them while you shop. Reading product reviews can also be a huge help. Do your research, you have nothing to worry about.