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A baby can't breathe through it's mouth?!

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
This isn't really about co-sleeping per se, but I put it here because I think it fit here best.

DH and I were out to dinner with his grandparents tonight. We were discussing how DH's sister doesn't have a crib for her new son. She plans to, but for now I guess he's still in a bassinet or sleeps in a swing or something.

Anyway, GFIL says that he heard about a lot of deaths from breastfeeding co-sleeping lately on the news. And that the problem is that parents sleep with their babies and smother them because a baby can't breathe through it's mouth. That a baby can only breathe through it's nose until it's 8 months old. I tried explaining co-sleeping but he insisted it's dangerous because a baby can't breathe through its mouth. DH changed the subject and that's probably a good thing.

I can't wait to find out what GFIL has to say when DH and I have a breastfed co-sleeping baby. I feel for all of you guys and the weird stuff you have to listen to defending your choices.
post #2 of 15
Wow, that's definitely a weird one. What's the baby supposed to do if it gets a stuffy nose then? Have a tracheotomy put in?
post #3 of 15
I have to admit I kinda-sorta believe it for some babies. When DS was maybe 6 mo old DH was playing around with him and pinched his nose shut... DS couldn't yet figure out to open his mouth to breathe... It was weird...
post #4 of 15
I think this is true, actually. Oh, I mean the breathing thing. The smothering thing is ridiculous. Anyway, 8 months seems too late to me, but I do think newborns can't breathe through their mouths. Maybe that's a wive's tale?
post #5 of 15
That part is actually true. Mouth breathing is not a natural instinct for newborns. They are naturally nose breathers which is why they get so distressed with stuffy noses.
post #6 of 15

believe it or not...it's true

It actually IS TRUE. a baby cannot breathe through it's mouth for several months after birth. my ped explained to me when I was so frustrated at my newborn's stuffiness during the first few weeks of life. I figured "if there is so much mucous, why doesn't she just breathe through her mouth?" But ped said that they cannot do that yet. interesting isn't it? i had no idea either!
post #7 of 15
Wow. Learn something new every day.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Well then I guess color me embarassed.

Although I still don't get what that has to do with breastfeeding or co-sleeping.

Also, when baby is crying it is definately taking air in and pushing it out through it's mouth. Is it not? Is it that they're physically not capable? Or that they just don't know how to control it?
post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeckC View Post
Well then I guess color me embarassed.

Although I still don't get what that has to do with breastfeeding or co-sleeping.

Also, when baby is crying it is definately taking air in and pushing it out through it's mouth. Is it not? Is it that they're physically not capable? Or that they just don't know how to control it?
Why don't you ask your GFIL since he seems to know all about this? JK, of course. I have no idea why they can't breathe through their mouths. I'm curious, too now.
post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeckC View Post
Well then I guess color me embarassed.

Although I still don't get what that has to do with breastfeeding or co-sleeping.

Also, when baby is crying it is definately taking air in and pushing it out through it's mouth. Is it not? Is it that they're physically not capable? Or that they just don't know how to control it?
I think they just don't know how to coordinate the different muscle groups to do it on purpose.
post #11 of 15
I have a ten month old and I know she can but still she freaks out if her nose is blocked in any way. Every time I wipe her nose she stops breathing and starts panicking. I have to be ready to do it and do it as quick as possible.
post #12 of 15
My Dr told me they don't usually learn this till 4-5 months, hence, why newborns sneeze all the time.
post #13 of 15
They're obligate nose breathers.

I always thought that was a funny term.
post #14 of 15
My DS scared me silly when he woke up with a stuffy nose in the middle of the night, when he was about three weeks. Every time he tried to take a breath his eyes got really wide and panicked, like he was suffocating. I still get distressed when I think about that look on his face.
post #15 of 15
My LC told me they just don't know they can breathe through their mouths. DD has had a stuffy nose and she definitely breathed through her mouth at night sometimes.
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