With products like bouncer chairs, beanbags, swings, sleep position is key. Look out for baby’s head rolling forward onto their chest.
Although it’s common for babies to settle whilst sitting or lying on these products (and we are not saying not to buy these products), they are unsuitable for sleep.
When babies are allowed to sleep in or on a product where they are in an unsupported sitting position or a semi reclined position, there is potential for their head to drop forwards onto their chin causing positional asphyxia. This was the cause of death in around half of car seat cases and almost all pushchair, swing and bouncer deaths in one study.
In addition to not sleeping in sitting devices, there is evidence that infants spending too much time in sitting devices are more likely to have gastroesophageal reflux and plagiocephaly.
Soft surfaces near my face are hazardous especially when I’m sleeping.
Nests or sleep positioners have become popular products for new parents to buy. These products can often come with promises such as improved baby sleep. However, babies require very little. Any extra fabric or material in their sleep space could become a potential suffocation hazard if baby turns to face against the sides (see keep my cot clear).
In addition, many of these products actually state in the small print that they are unsuitable for unsupervised sleep.
Evidence For Our Message That Babies Should Not Sleep in or on Certain Baby Products
“Some UK retailers have stopped selling baby sleep positioners amid concerns over their safety.”*
“Sitting devices, such as car seats, strollers, swings, infant carriers and slings, are not recommended for routine sleep in the hospital or at home, particularly for young infants.” **