Have you ever gone into the nursery and poked your baby while he was sleeping to see if he was breathing?
Or have you perched precariously over your baby’s crib so your cheek was right over his mouth and you could feel those little breaths?
Or maybe you decided to just hunker down and sleep in the glider once you decided to transition your baby to the crib, just to keep a close eye on him…
Come on…fess up! We’ve ALL done it!
I know I was guilty of at least two of those when my guys were little. SIDS is always in the back of your mind when you have a new baby…you’re the mama (or papa) bear and must protect baby!
I also know that when a baby who has never slept alone in the crib (perhaps preferring to sleep on your shoulder all night??) starts sleeping 11-12 hours, parents feel the need to go in every 15 minutes to make sure he’s still alive! I get that…this is a weird and alternate universe where your child is sleeping WAY longer than he used to!
[Just last week one the moms I’m working with was laughing when she realized how ironic it was that she hired me to get her baby to sleep longer periods in her crib…and now she was poking her baby to wake up! Ha!]
Well tired parents, I have found a great NEW product that can help ease these fears!
Over the past couple of months, I’ve gotten to know the co-founder of SafeToSleep, Ryan Santangelo, and after doing a seminar together in Chicago, I asked him some of the most often asked questions I get from families:
What exactly is the SafeToSleep Baby Monitor?
We feel the SafeToSleep baby monitor is one of the greatest infant sleep safety products ever invented. It is designed to keep babies safe by monitoring their breathing during sleep. And it works! We get calls every week from parents that tell us their SafeToSleep may have saved their baby’s life.
The SafeToSleep is the first baby monitor that can monitor the breathing of your sleeping baby and alert you if your baby is experiencing a breathing problem. The baby lies directly on the SleepMat, which is a soft sleep surface that uses advanced fiber optic technology to detect the baby’s breathing. Parents monitor their baby’s breathing directly from their smartphone or tablet using the free SafeToSleep application. The product also comes with a Parent Unit for those parents who do not have smartphones.
What makes your product different from others on the market?
The SafeToSleep monitor is the first in a new category of baby monitor called Breathing Monitors. Up until now, there were three traditional categories of baby monitors, which included (1) audio monitors, (2) video monitors, and (3) movement. These monitors are all based on technology that is over 20 years old and not designed to monitor the breathing of a sleeping baby.
With this in mind, there are five key differences that really set SafeToSleep apart from all other products on the market:
- SafeToSleep can monitor the breath rate of a baby in real time. Until today, the ability to monitor baby breathing was a feature only found in hospital monitors. For the first time, parents can monitor their babies just like they do in the hospital, with the accuracy of a hospital monitor.
- SafeToSleep is an active monitoring system, which means the system will alert you if your baby needs attention. Other monitors require the parent to be monitoring the monitor at the precise time the baby is in trouble. The SafeToSleep will let you know when you are needed; even if it’s in the middle of the night.
- SafeToSleep can alert you of a breathing problem BEFORE your baby stops breathing. Babies normally breathe at between 30-60 breaths per minute (BPM). If breathing slows to less than 10 BPM or increases to over 80 BPM, our system will notify the parent. No other system on the market can do this.
- SafeToSleep has the intelligence to know if your baby is awake or sleeping. The system tracks this information and provides sleep time and sleep quality reports. There is no system on the market that can do this. In fact, most hospital monitors do not even provide this level of sophistication.
- Finally, SafeToSleep is the only monitor that has been hospital tested and clinically validated to be as accurate as the wired cardio-respiratory monitors used in hospitals around the world.
How durable is it?
The SleepMat is incredibly durable! We’ve jumped on it. We’ve rolled over it with a chair. We’ve hit it with a baseball bat. We’ve even driven over it with a car! [I’ve seen pictures of this. It’s no joke!] The SleepMat survived every test and continued to work perfectly!
How long will the product last? In terms of quality and battery life…
The monitor is powered by 4 AAA batteries, which will last for about 30 days of continuous use. The batteries allow the monitor to be portable, so you can take it wherever your baby sleeps (e.g., grandma’s house, day care center, camping, etc.) Also, there are no cords or wires that could put your baby at risk for entanglement or strangulation.
It is very easy and very intuitive. All you have to do is download the SafeToSleep app from the App Store (for Apple devices) or Google Play (for Android devices). The app works on any Apple or Android device. Once installed, the app will connect your smartphone to the SleepMat and you’ll instantly be monitoring your baby.
How did you come up with the idea for SafeToSleep?
My brother, Pete, and I were very young when a family we knew suffered a SIDS death. I think that once you are touched by SIDS, it stays with you forever.
Flash forward 30 years. Pete and I are working together as technology entrepreneurs where we have founded two successful tech startups that have grown national in scope. With the SIDS experience still in our minds, we decided to focus our energy and resources on what turned into a three-year global development project designed to protect babies from unexpected infant death. It was from that effort that the SafeToSleep monitor was born. The monitor allows parents, for the first time, to actively monitor their baby’s breath rate and be alerted if there is a breathing problem.
Shortly after the product launched in February 2013, we began to receive calls from parents telling us how the SafeToSleep system saved their baby by alerting them when their baby stopped breathing. The monitor has also helped parents discover physical breathing obstructions that may have never been found otherwise. We believe that this technology will be seen as one of history’s greatest contributions to infant sleep safety. We believe that that this product will be as important for infant sleep safety as the car seat has been for infant travel safety.
If these had been around when my kiddos were babies, it would’ve given me more peace of mind, and I would’ve done a lot less poking! It feels like a second set of (rational) eyes watching your baby! It isn’t subjective–either your baby is breathing well, or he isn’t. There really isn’t a gray area with this. And the fact that you know if his breathing has slowed to a dangerous level OR he’s hyperventilating is truly amazing.
And putting on my sleep consultant cap for a moment, having the ability to know exactly when your baby fell asleep and woke up is an awesome feature. I always have my clients log sleep time and how long it takes a baby to fall asleep…and this takes the (guess) work out of it! (Especially helpful for babies in daycare!)
If you would like to connect with SafeToSleep, find them on Facebook.
Disclaimer: I do not work for SafeToSleep, nor am I getting any compensation for writing this post. I just like sharing info on companies that I believe are helping parents be better parents!