The first few months of caring for a baby are also the most tasking. Since they can’t either walk or sit, you need a place to keep them whenever you need to do something else that requires you not to hold a baby. Is a baby lounger worth it for this task?
A baby lounger is a worthwhile investment that helps you get some hands-free time while looking after your baby as usual. If you can use them as recommended, while paying attention to your baby, you wouldn’t regret you ever bought one.
If you’re worried about the functionality or safety of baby loungers for your baby, this post is here to help. Here, you’ll learn the correct ways to use a baby lounger for maximum comfort, both for you and the baby.
What’s a Baby Lounger?
A baby lounger is a small and comfortable pillow-like structure designed to hold the support and relax your baby while they’re off your hand. It’s usually soft at the base provide a comfortable resting surface for the child while playing.
A baby lounger requires no special setup kit. You can simply buy the lounger, set it on a plane surface, and set your baby on it. While baby loungers are useful for play, nursing, or just as a platform for rest, you should always use them with supervision and you should never let the baby sleep on them.
Are Baby Loungers Worth It?
Most media reports about baby loungers are usually negative. If you’re looking to purchase a baby lounger, these reports could make it seem like a really bad investment, but that is not the case.
In this section, I’ll outline some of the benefits of using a baby lounger that will make you rethink all your negative thoughts about them.
- Convenience and portability
One reason why you may want to get a lounger is convenience. If you read enough parenting blogs, you should already know how putting a baby on high surfaces is dangerous. With a baby lounger, however, you can always put down your baby safely and conveniently.
Also, a baby lounger doesn’t take up so much space. For this reason, it can go in any room in the house, and it’s also easier to carry. Therefore, you can safely take your baby with you anywhere, simplifying the task of keeping an eye on them.
- Frees your hands
If you’ve ever wished you could free up your two hands without taking your eyes off your baby, now you can. By setting your baby on its lounger, you can keep doing any work that requires you to use both of your hands without keeping your eyes off your baby.
If you’re attentive enough, you can also set your baby lounger on a high surface to avoid bending over each time you need to feed or touch your baby.
However, you should generally avoid placing your baby on any high surface. Babies can roll on baby loungers, and there is a risk of the baby rolling over and falling from the surface. Bending a few times every hour isn’t that hard; it’s one of the sacrifices of being a mom.
- Easy to clean
Most baby loungers are machine-washable, making them incredibly easy to clean. Some even feature removable covers, allowing you to remove and wash the cover only, whenever it’s dirty.
If your lounger doesn’t have a removable cover, you can improvise using a piece of breathable fabric. This will make it easier to clean without compromising on the comfort or convenience of the baby lounger.
You should only dry the lounger in the air. You shouldn’t attempt to use an iron or dry clean the lounger to maintain its quality over the long term.
How to Choose the Best Baby Lounger
There are hundreds of baby loungers available on the market, but they’re not equally good. While some are designed for maximum safety and comfort, others are just made to be cheap.
Here are some of the factors you should consider when choosing a baby lounger to strike the perfect balance between comfort, convenience, and safety.
- The fabric
The fabric used in the exterior part of the lounger is the most important factor to consider when purchasing a baby lounger. Since that’s what your baby will be sleeping on, you can’t afford to skimp on it.
The best materials for baby loungers are breathable fabrics that don’t heat up. Such a fabric will reduce the chances of suffocation while maintaining a comfortable resting surface.
- Size and weight
If you’ll be taking your baby all over the home quite frequently, the weight and size of your baby lounger should be one of the deciding factors of your purchase.
You don’t have a lot of control over the size; you must always buy a lounger that’s proportional to the size of your baby. With the weight, however, you have some wiggling room. Choosing a heavier one will be sturdier, while a lighter one will be easier to carry.
- The cover
If you buy a baby lounger with a removable cover, you can remove it for washing whenever it gets dirty. You can ever try different skins to change up the look of the lounge.
When getting a baby lounger for your baby, you should check to confirm that the cover is removable to avoid complicated washing steps later.
Are Baby Loungers Safe?
The safety of baby loungers generally depends on who uses them, and how they’re being used. If you get a baby lounger from a reputable company and you use it as advised, your baby won’t be exposed to any safety hazards.
In addition to adhering religiously to the safety standards, you must also be around at all times when using a baby lounger to supervise its usage. It’s only best for circumstances when you need to leave the baby to play while you get some work done.
Also, baby loungers don’t meet the guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics, with regards to the standards of a baby’s sleeping surface. According to them, a baby’s sleeping surface should be firm and free of all soft objects, including bedding.
However, a baby lounger defies all of those guidelines. The surface is not firm by any means, and the entirety of the object is soft. If you’re looking for a sleeping surface for your baby, you should get a crib and stay away from beddings and pillows.
Since babies fall asleep quite often, there is a high chance that your baby will fall asleep on a lounger someday. If, or when this happens, you must defy the rule to “not wake a sleeping baby” and move them away from the lounger to keep them safe.
All of the safety tips that are required when you use baby loungers can only be possible when you’re physically present and actively observing the baby. Implicatively, this is the only scenario when you should use a baby lounger if you care about the safety of your baby.
Safety Tips for Using Baby Loungers
Baby loungers are only safe when you use them properly. Many new moms mistake the soft surface to be perfect for their babies to sleep, but that is certainly not the case. If you’re using a baby lounger for the first time, here are some tips for using baby loungers safely and comfortably.
- Don’t let your baby fall asleep in a lounger
Sometimes, you see adverts of babies sleeping comfortably in baby lounges. These ads are misleading and you should never allow that to happen with your baby. Regardless of the marketing material on your baby lounger, it’s generally unsafe for putting a baby to sleep.
When a baby rolls in a lounger, they could end up in a bad position, if there’s nobody around to correct their sleeping position. If your baby falls asleep in their lounger, and it happens frequently, you should put them to sleep in their crib.
- Use a Lounger with Breathable Fabric
In addition to obvious reasons to choose such a fabric. The breathable fabric also helps to keep your baby cooler and more comfortable. Most baby loungers you’ll see on the market are made from breathable fabric anyway, and there is almost no justification for using one that isn’t.
- Always be Attentive
Regardless of what your baby is doing in the lounger, never leave them unattended. Not only must you be physically present when your baby is in the baby lounger, but you must also pay attention to them.
A popular baby lounger manufacturer, Boppy, had to call back 3 million baby loungers after eight tragic incidents. If there’s one thing to learn from the story, it’s to be always attentive with any baby lounger.
- Don’t co-sleep with baby loungers
The high sides of the regular lounger could trick you into thinking they would prevent you from rolling over your baby while co-sleeping, and that’s partly true. However, the risks of letting the baby sleep on the lounger are far superior to that of you potentially rolling over them.
If you want to co-sleep with your baby, a crib or a bassinet are safer options than a lounger. Recall that loungers require attentiveness, and you can’t possibly be attentive while you dream away.