Babies should be comfortable as the temperature dips, but parents should take care not to overdo it, experts say.
Babies should be comfortable as the temperature dips, but parents should take care not to overdo it, experts say. Some advice:
• A temperature that is comfortable for adults is plenty comfortable for babies.
• Dress baby one layer warmer than what you're wearing. Check the back of baby's neck, not hands and feet, to assess body temperature.
• Additional blankets at sleep time can be a suffocation hazard.
• Don't use space heaters in baby's room.
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• Bulky clothes can interfere with car-seat straps.
• Blankets draped over car seats can overheat and asphyxiate a baby.
• Additions to car seats, such as sheepskin covers, should be assessed by a professional to make sure they don't interfere with the seat's function.
• Not all babies need to be swaddled, but swaddling can be helpful for colicky babies.
• Stop swaddling at 3 months, or when baby can roll.
• Keep baby's head free at all times. Be sure any loose blanket is folded to the inside.
• A blanket is too tight when you can't slide your hand between the blanket and baby's chest.
• Be sure to check for overheating. Cool fingers and toes do not mean a baby is cold. Use the back of baby's neck instead. If the neck is hot or sweaty, unwrap baby.
Sources: Columbus Public Health, Yvonne Gustafson
To ask a question about baby safety, call the Elizabeth Blackwell Parent Help Line at (614) 566-4446.