Parenting / saftey guidance - how has it changed in the last few years?(25 Posts)
Just jumping in to say I believe second hand cot mattresses are not considered a risk providing they are firm and clean and fit the cot correctly. When the guidelines about SIDS first came out there were some theories that fumes in old mattresses could be breathed in by babies causing problems, this theory was disproved and advice changed. Also mattresses have changed, they were commonly foam often with breathing holes and therefore soaked up vomit, milk etc. now they are more usually similar to adult mattresses and have waterproof covers. Ours was sprung (therefore supportive and firm) with a washable cover and a plastic layer underneath (so clean with no possibility of liquids soaking into the mattress itself).
My advice may be out of date again but when I was expecting DC2 (in 2002) I rang FSID for advice and they said fine to reuse a mattress for a sibling provided it was firm and clean. I would recommend any parent get advice direct from FSID. I wouldn't use a second hand mattress that I didn't know where it had been though!
Re. Carseats, in this country they have a date of manufacture stamp somewhere - they are difficult to interpret but our local independent nursery shop read mine easily enough. The main manufacturers (Britax etc) give their products a 10 year life span. I've read shorter life spans elsewhere but I think I would trust the manufacturers on this as its in their interest to say short life spans and get you buying new products.
I do think every parent should do their own research on these topics though and not rely on what someone says on the Internet
Guidelines change all the time though, it's important to read the newest literature even when it's not your first baby. When I had DC1 babies were weaned at 4 months - and indeed they were insistent that weaning must start by 6 months or the baby would miss the window of opportunity to learn to chew formula milk was made up with cooled boiled water of any temperature and a days supply made in advance and stored in the fridge. We now know better than this but many people cling to the 'that's how I did it so it must be ok'.
:eyeroll: at the US banning drop-side cots rather than tighten up the safety standards.
The formula advice has changed I think?
OK, drop side cots. It looks like they've been banned in the US, but not in the UK.
From Which (2010
"The sale or manufacture of drop-side cots and cribs will be banned in the US from June 2011, following the deaths of at least 32 babies since 2000.
The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) voted unanimously to bring in the new rules, which will stop the selling of 'dangerous, traditional drop-side cribs' and make mattress supports stronger.
More rigorous safety testing will also be introduced for cots in the US, making them ... among the most stringent in the world.
US drop-side cot ban
Drop-side cots have a mechanism at one or both sides of the cot that allow you to lower the rails, making it easier for you to lift your baby in and out. Drop-side cot models are widely available in the UK.
According to the CPSC, the ban has been prompted by reports of 'at least 32' baby deaths since 2000 from suffocation or strangulation, due to detaching drop-side rails on faulty cots, or in some cases, when a cot wasn't assembled properly.
The space created between the side and cot mattress if it partially drops down can trap a baby's body.
The US has issued voluntary recall notices on around 11 million cots since 2007.
British cots come under European safety standards, which are different to those in the US. So far, there has been no indication that a similar ban on drop-side cots will be applied in Europe.
Drop-side cots in the UK
The UK government axed the collection of accident data in 2002, so it's not clear how many, if any, parents in the UK have experienced similar problems with this type of cot, but the Trading Standards Institute said it had not been alerted to any patterns of incidents involving defective drop-side cots emerging in the UK."
However, more recently, Which wrote:
"*Are drop-sided cot beds safe?*
New rules to ban drop-side cots in the United States were introduced from June 2011, following the deaths of at least 32 babies because of defective drop-side cots since 2000, and recalls on 11 million cots since 2007.
Our nursery furniture safety experts believe that it would not be possible for the kind of accidents that occurred in the US to happen with a cot bed that complies with the British safety standards. British cots come under British safety standards, which are different from less stringent standards in the US.
However, in our tests we found that assembling a cot bed incorrectly can lead to minor problems that wont happen if it is put together right such as having to open the drop-side in an unintuitive manner, or placing the base up too high.
Always check the instructions carefully and retain them for future reference."
I ignored the blanket and sleeping bag guidelines. My baby was swaddled so no chance of her wriggling down into the bag or under blankets. She couldn't settle unless tightly cocooned. Mind you I had a 9lb baby and a teeny tiny bump so I guess she felt more at home when constricted.
I avoided the drop side cot as I am particularly cack handed when tired.
There is a minimum weight for the sleeping bags, and with blankets they need to be feet to foot, not sure that is recent advice.
Just googled and Bertie is correct, it seems tha the UK/EU don't have expiration dates for car seats--sorry, my mistake! With only a 4 year gap, it shouldn't have been an issue anyway.
UK/EU car seats don't have expiry dates. US ones do hence the advice floating about on the English-speaking web
Cot mattresses still advised to buy new.
If you're co-sleeping then I wouldn't use a sleeping bag anyway because it puts a layer between baby and you and can lead to overheating when in combination with adult bedding/adult body heat.
Just been looking at our carseat - which has been used precisely twice because we don't have a car and so it's transported DC1 and DC2 home from the hospital and that's all - and it doesn't have an expiry date. Have no intention of buying a new one for a one-off ten minute journey even if it has expired!
Also, I hear the advice about newborns and blankets, but I have to say I ignore it. DS was born in the coldest winter since 1947 and our house is old and draughty. He slept on a sheepskin, in a hat, sleepsuit and a newborn sleeping bag (with sleeves, so no wriggling down) and with a blanket over him! I wouldn't use a pillow or duvet though.
Interesting thread. I have a dd who is 7 and a ds who is 5. As I was pg from when dd was one I think I only followed the advice from dds time. I'm now pg again....wonder what has changed.
It was wean at 6 months, new mattress per baby then. I have two cot mattresses still the kids use them as crash mats/floor cushions!
I had no idea about the no blankets thing, it was no pillows and duvets then and no newborns in sleeping bags.
"Expiry dates are contentious, there's not enough evidence that they have been worked out rigorously."
Ah, another one to google and make up your own mind then!
Don't think you could EBF until age 2 - wasn't there a case in France of a toddler who died because his mother had refused to give him solid food? He died of malnutrition I think.
Expiry date is printed somewhere on it, but often you have to contact manufacturer, too.
Expiry dates are contentious, there's not enough evidence that they have been worked out rigorously.
About car seats, I think the UK ate about to change guidance on them, to require rear-facing for longer. (Will google when I get a minute).
I didn't know they had an expiration date though - we've kept DS's rear-facing one for DD. How do youI find out the expiration date?
at the idea of EBF till 2 years. We did BF till past 2. Can't imagine how all-consuming EBF for 2 years would be!
At my NCT class they said newborns weren't supposed to use sleeping bags incase they wriggled down inside them. Is that wrong?
Sorry yes EBF til 6 months!
Drop side cot must be still ok as we have new John Lewis Anna drop side cot and it is a best seller. Mind you we didn't think it felt sturdy enough with drop side released so have bolted it on at full height (like non-drop cot) anyway.
They say BF til 6 months. But WHO says 2 years!
They do say no blankets, use baby sleeping bag instead, but I think it's ok to use holey blankets tucked in firmly to edges of mattress when it is cold.
I suspected that 2nd hand mattresses are indeed still a no, but a mner was convinced the advice had changed. I did a quick google but couldn't find an answer either way.
In the US, car seat guidance has just been changed to recommend rear-facing until at least 2 yrs (used to be until 1 yr) but preferably to the height/weight limits of the car seat.
Also, keep in mind that car seats have an expiration date.
Yes, secondhand mattresses still aren't recommended, and weaning advice is still 6m. Socket covers are now a health hazard though.
I thought second hand mattresses were still a no?
Anyway the SIDS guidelines are here...
Weaning is recommend at six months now, if that helps?
I don't expect to slavishly follow every point btw!
But I'd really like to know what the official advice is, and will follow it unless a good reason not to. (I'm still open to co-sleeping for example, despite being told not to, as having done my own research it seems the data the advice is based on is far from conclusive as long as you follow safe co-sleeping practices, and have made my own decision on this).
I'm pregnant with DC2. DS is 4, and DD is due in a few weeks.
I noticed that the guidance on cots has been changed since DS was born (am I right in thinking that drop side cots are now considered dangerous?) and I think I read somewhere not to give babies blankets at all now, is this the current guidance now or did I imagine that?
Also someone said here that second hand mattresses are no longer considered a SIDs risk - is that true or just nonsense? (We'll get a new mattress anyway, but useful to know if I don't need to worry when we're staying away from home!)
Given that the advice changes so often I suspect there are more I've missed! Does anyone know of any other guidelines which have been changed in the last few years?
Is the official advice still to EBF to 6mo for example?
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