Staying Warm Safely

Cold Weather babyCold weather makes us want to bundle up- but don’t go grabbing coats and comforters for your baby just yet!

Certain safety precautions should be followed for babies in the winter, including car seat, crib, and clothing safety. Here are a few tips on keeping your baby at the Goldilocks temperature- just right.

Car Seat and Coats

Bulky coats create space between your child’s body and car seat straps, making the straps less effective. A coat or snowsuit is compressible in the event of crash.

To see this with your own eyes, put your child in their winter coat, then buckle them into the car seat. Adjust the straps so you feel they are properly tightened. Now remove the coat and see how much space is actually between your child’s body and the straps.

Instead of a coat, leave your child in their regular indoor clothes and throw a blanket over them once they are strapped in. You could also invest in a car seat poncho, car seat cover, or just place their coat over them backwards.

Blankets in the Crib

You may love a thick quilt in the winter, but blankets in the crib increase the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Loose material in a crib is one of the more common factors in SIDS cases.

If you do use a blanket, try swaddling so the blanket stays tucked around the baby. For a loose blanket, tuck it into the crib mattress around the baby’s feet so he can’t accidentally pull it over his head.

You could skip the blanket, and instead look for fleece sleep sacks. They are just as warm, and can’t accidentally be kicked off when baby wiggles around.

Over-doing Winter Wear

Cold hands and feet are not an accurate reading of your baby’s temperature because of their still-developing circulatory systems.

Little socks and hats are good for keeping baby warm, but don’t overdo it with thick sweaters, onesies, or too many layers. A rule of thumb is one light layer more than you are wearing.

You should also check the setting on your thermostat in the winter. You don’t need to crank up the heat for a new baby. Keep the house at a comfortable temperature for you, and your baby should be warm enough too.