So, this sling safety warning... - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-24-2010, 05:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just heard on the radio that the CPSA is saying slings should not be used for babies under four months old. What a drag, as I'm due with #2 in May. With ds, I only used a sling until four months, when we switched to a carrier because he didn't like the sling. I'm planning to do something similar this time. But I'm dreading the comments that will come. I had a lady attack me in a parking lot with my infant ds for not wrapping his head entirely in a blanket when it was kind of cold outside (duh, talk about risk of smothering), so I'm sure there will be plenty of this kind of crap now, and I just don't deal well with it when I'm all post-partum and hormonal.

Has anyone thought of a good, informed way to explain why no, my sling and the way I'm wearing it is just fine, the government is, as usual, being alarmist and paternalistic? I almost want to just print up a card to hand anybody who brings it up. Also, is this going to turn into a thing where CPS gets called on sling wearers?

It's good, I suppose, to be reminded about sling safety and all, but blah, what a pain. Like I'm not acutely aware of the baby's breathing and comfort every moment.
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Old 03-24-2010, 06:03 PM
 
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From what i heard the slings that are the "bad" ones for little babies are the deep pocket style with the elastic on the edge (although yes any sling can be used wrong).
So if someone bugs you i would just say something along the lines of, "ohh i know all about those recalls, but people have been slinging babies for hundreds of years, its the new "fad" so there is a lot of user error, i know what i am doing, thanks for the concern though!"

And if its a closer friend or family, i would bombard them with ALL the info, and then tell them to shut it. (ok maybe i would be a little bit nicer, maybe)

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Old 03-24-2010, 06:19 PM
 
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I've just been telling people that the recall is for those bag slings that are like baby purses and not the typical sling where the baby is close to you and you can feel them breathing. Babies are not dogs and should not be carried in a bag like one. I also give some information about there's been like what, 7 deaths?, in the last couple of years where the number who die in cribs is in the hundreds every year. But there is no warning about cribs killing babies and you are a bad mom if you keep your baby in bed with you.

I have a stand in a very busy farmers' market and people see me wearing my baby all the time & I frequently get questions. It's good to have a rehearsed answer.
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Old 03-25-2010, 01:18 PM
 
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I was just about to post the same question! My friend is going around facebook saying "if you use a sling with your baby, STOP!" It's really making me mad. Of course she's the type that never did babywearing in the first place and believes anything the media tells her, but I'd still like something intelligent to say to her because I don't want any moms to become discouraged from baby wearing.
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Old 03-25-2010, 01:29 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mariekitt24 View Post
I was just about to post the same question! My friend is going around facebook saying "if you use a sling with your baby, STOP!" It's really making me mad. Of course she's the type that never did babywearing in the first place and believes anything the media tells her, but I'd still like something intelligent to say to her because I don't want any moms to become discouraged from baby wearing.
There is aBabywearing Safety group on Facebook that has a lot of great info. I often repost a lot of there stuff just for people to read on their own if interested.


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Originally Posted by MissMommyNiceNice View Post
I've just been telling people that the recall is for those bag slings that are like baby purses and not the typical sling where the baby is close to you and you can feel them breathing. Babies are not dogs and should not be carried in a bag like one. I also give some information about there's been like what, 7 deaths?, in the last couple of years where the number who die in cribs is in the hundreds every year. But there is no warning about cribs killing babies and you are a bad mom if you keep your baby in bed with you.
This is basically my response too.

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Old 03-25-2010, 01:32 PM
 
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This whole things makes me furious. Anything non-mainstream is dangerous, even though the mainstream things have much higher death rates. It's maddening that babywearing is just starting to catch on again, and now many misinformed people won't carry their babies because some scaredy-cat beaurocracy says (or seems to say) it's dangerous.

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Old 03-25-2010, 01:39 PM
 
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I generally say "Oh, you mean a BAG sling? Yeah, those things are death traps - wouldn't waste my money or risk my baby in one of THOSE!" and then I go on and on about how wonderful and awesome my WAHM-made gauze wrap is and how wonderful it is for baby. I tend to overwhelm them with everything I know about babywearing in the minute and a half it takes their eyes to glaze over.

I think the recall itself is a great idea - those bag slings can totally be dangerous. I just don't like how it's turned into "slingz R bad! ZOMG!" when in reality it's a TYPE of sling that is easy to be used incorrectly and un-safe-ly.

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Old 03-25-2010, 01:40 PM
 
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http://www.prweb.com/releases/2010/03/prweb3718984.htm
"not all slings are created equal"

I just ended up sharing that article with facebook to try to clear things up.
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Old 03-25-2010, 02:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mariekitt24 View Post
http://www.prweb.com/releases/2010/03/prweb3718984.htm
"not all slings are created equal"

I just ended up sharing that article with facebook to try to clear things up.
I'm thinking of printing out a bunch of these and hand them out to all the little old ladies who approach me at the grocery store.

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Old 03-25-2010, 02:39 PM
 
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There was an article on CNN of a tragic story where a 7 day old baby died in one of the bag slings. The comments infuriated me! Everyone was saying how terrible slings were and babies should be in car seats. Well here is a SIDS study for people like that: 17 deaths in 9 years!!! from too much time in a car seat!! Come on folks!

Background: As episodes of decreased oxygenation levels have been recorded in premature infants placed in car seats, it is believed that these infants are at risk of life-threatening events and death. No data on the prevalence of such infant deaths are available. The aim of our study was to determine the incidence of sudden deaths in infants occurring in sitting devices in a whole population and to determine whether premature infants account for a disproportionate number of these deaths.

Design: Retrospective population-based cohort study reviewing all cases of sudden unexpected death in infants between birth and 1 year of age that occurred in the province of Quebec between January 1991 and December 2000.

Results: Of the 508 deaths reviewed, 409 were unexplained and 99 were explained after investigation. Seventeen deaths occurred in a sitting device, of which 10 were unexplained. There was no excess of premature infants dying. However, there was an excess of infants of less than 1 month of age found to have died in a sitting position in the unexplained death group. In addition, three infants who died in a sitting position had an increased risk of upper airway obstruction.

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Old 03-25-2010, 02:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tammylsmith View Post
There was an article on CNN of a tragic story where a 7 day old baby died in one of the bag slings. The comments infuriated me! Everyone was saying how terrible slings were and babies should be in car seats. Well here is a SIDS study for people like that: 17 deaths in 9 years!!! from too much time in a car seat!! Come on folks!

Background: As episodes of decreased oxygenation levels have been recorded in premature infants placed in car seats, it is believed that these infants are at risk of life-threatening events and death. No data on the prevalence of such infant deaths are available. The aim of our study was to determine the incidence of sudden deaths in infants occurring in sitting devices in a whole population and to determine whether premature infants account for a disproportionate number of these deaths.

Design: Retrospective population-based cohort study reviewing all cases of sudden unexpected death in infants between birth and 1 year of age that occurred in the province of Quebec between January 1991 and December 2000.

Results: Of the 508 deaths reviewed, 409 were unexplained and 99 were explained after investigation. Seventeen deaths occurred in a sitting device, of which 10 were unexplained. There was no excess of premature infants dying. However, there was an excess of infants of less than 1 month of age found to have died in a sitting position in the unexplained death group. In addition, three infants who died in a sitting position had an increased risk of upper airway obstruction.
I just got all caught up in those comments, it is hard to stop reading them though. sad that people think the only safe place is in a carseat or crib not in a mama. Everything has user error to it and slings are no exception it really is too bad how this is casting such a shadow on babywearing in general rather than focusing on the problem products.

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Old 03-25-2010, 03:00 PM
 
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Originally Posted by phoebemommy View Post
I just heard on the radio that the CPSA is saying slings should not be used for babies under four months old. What a drag, as I'm due with #2 in May. With ds, I only used a sling until four months, when we switched to a carrier because he didn't like the sling. I'm planning to do something similar this time. But I'm dreading the comments that will come. I had a lady attack me in a parking lot with my infant ds for not wrapping his head entirely in a blanket when it was kind of cold outside (duh, talk about risk of smothering), so I'm sure there will be plenty of this kind of crap now, and I just don't deal well with it when I'm all post-partum and hormonal.

Has anyone thought of a good, informed way to explain why no, my sling and the way I'm wearing it is just fine, the government is, as usual, being alarmist and paternalistic? I almost want to just print up a card to hand anybody who brings it up. Also, is this going to turn into a thing where CPS gets called on sling wearers?

It's good, I suppose, to be reminded about sling safety and all, but blah, what a pain. Like I'm not acutely aware of the baby's breathing and comfort every moment.


Lets begin with the first part.

That radio interview was incorrect nowwhere does it say that you should not use slings with babies under 4 months. Nowhere.

As others have said there were some very bad slings which were recalled yesterday and those were the targets. Those slings should be off of the market now. As usual (like you said already) be safe and all of that good stuff but the real problem slings are the bag slings.

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Old 03-25-2010, 04:16 PM
 
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Timely post...I too was glued to the CNN comments this morning and got 3 (?!?) admonishments for wearing my child in "one of those things" this week. I'm proud to say that I kept my cool. I said, "Thank you for your concern. The recall was on a specific brand of carrier. The reasons that make it unsafe don't apply to us or to this carrier, but I know you were only trying to be helpful."

My heart is broken for the families that lost babies, but I hate the bad publicity this gives babywearing in general

Now for my rant: Millions of cribs across many brands have been recently recalled...there have been multiple infant deaths. It is equally tragic and sad...where is the outcry there?? Heck, CNN didn't even have an article about it.
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Old 03-25-2010, 04:35 PM
 
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It's because cribs aren't "new agey" or "hippy." People think this is some new fad. Many of the comments were as if slings are the newest thing for lazy parents. This drives me nuts, because the sling supports an age-old tradition of bonding, and yet the uninformed masses think it is just the new hip thing. It bears no meaning for me because I am a devoted baby wearer, but I am sad for those who could benefit from it but not think it is unsafe. I guess it just makes it all the more important for those of us who know the benefits to get out there and inform people!

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Old 03-25-2010, 04:39 PM
 
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you know it reminds me of when they found that breastmilk had pesticides and rocket fuel, it was a statement that our world is polluted and that pollution is showing up in our milk. But the media took it and ran with "your breastmilk is tainted ZOMG!"

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Old 03-25-2010, 04:50 PM
 
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For myself, I don't think it helps to get outraged.

A couple of ladies have talked to me in stores recently (not outright "Your baby is gonna die!" - just "Oh blah blah blah slings recall blah blah") and I have said, basically, "Yes, it's important to be safe! When you're carrying a baby in a sling, you should be able to kiss their head, and you should never carry them in a way you wouldn't in your arms. When my baby was a newborn, we felt uncomfortable carrying him lying-down in a sling, even though our slings aren't the kind that were recalled. I can totally see how people would be nervous about that! You can really see how a baby could get in a little bit of breathing trouble if their chin gets pushed into their chest. That's why we carry him upright. See how I'm carrying him right now? Oh, you'd like to know where I got this carrier? Well-"

(Which is basically what I say when people want to know about my wrap in general, LOL.)

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Old 03-25-2010, 05:22 PM
 
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I just read the "Not all slings are created equally" site, and while it's good, it's wordy. Does anybody have a link to a site that is more user friendly? I feel like people who are likely to jump to "SLING=BAD!" are not going to read that much info. But something with pictures demonstrating proper wear vs unsafe wear would be helpful. Even better would be something that actually does fit on a smaller sheet of paper to show people in stores, etc, who say something out of genuine concern but lack of knowledge.

I'm about to have my first baby any day now, and I'm trying to prepare now for the backlash that's starting.

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Old 03-25-2010, 05:40 PM
 
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My MIL knows I babywear, and since we just had a new one, she brought this up today. When I explained which slings were the problem, she was surprised that anyone would carry their baby like that, and really upset that it took so long to recall them. She generally has faith that DH and I make good choices (even if they are strange), but I could tell she liked being reassured.

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Old 03-25-2010, 06:41 PM
 
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I just read the "Not all slings are created equally" site, and while it's good, it's wordy. Does anybody have a link to a site that is more user friendly? I feel like people who are likely to jump to "SLING=BAD!" are not going to read that much info. But something with pictures demonstrating proper wear vs unsafe wear would be helpful. Even better would be something that actually does fit on a smaller sheet of paper to show people in stores, etc, who say something out of genuine concern but lack of knowledge.

I'm about to have my first baby any day now, and I'm trying to prepare now for the backlash that's starting.
http://www.babywearinginternational....t%20format.pdf

This looks like a clear, to the point brochure, with nice pics of proper babywearing as well, and it cites references at the bottom (I think just the first 4 pages are all you'd need). I may print up a few in case I get hassled in public- I tend to get flustered and will forget what I want to say. I might just say something like, "please educate yourself before making inappropriate comments to a stranger" and hand over the brochure.

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Old 03-26-2010, 07:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I found this rather simple handout:

http://www.slingsilove.com/babywearing101.pdf

ETA:

Also, a wallet card:

http://sleepingbaby.net/sling_safety_card.pdf
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Old 03-26-2010, 07:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, this is probably useful -- it's the actual CPSA warning, as opposed to the alarmist soundbyte I heard when I started this thread:

http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10165.html

It "is advising parents and caregivers to be cautious when using infant slings for babies younger than four months of age." That's reasonable.
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Old 03-26-2010, 11:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by phoebemommy View Post
I found this rather simple handout:

http://www.slingsilove.com/babywearing101.pdf

ETA:

Also, a wallet card:

http://sleepingbaby.net/sling_safety_card.pdf

Awesome. I bookmarked it. I no longer wear DS (He's a very independent little guy and walks on his own everywhere...sigh...this has it's drawbacks and it's perks). However I'm due this summer with DS 2 and hopefully the dust will have settled on this by then, but if not I want to be prepared.

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Old 03-27-2010, 02:19 AM
 
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Yeah, the mainstream media is really getting on my nerves lately. Alarmist headlines, no research into their stories, etc., etc. I don't watch the news anymore bc I don't like yelling at the TV.

I don't get neg comments about babywearing, if I did I am sure I could come up w/an earful. It astounds me how many people in this world feel it is appropriate to spout off about things that they know nothing about.

Comparing those bag slings to ring slings, wraps and other safe carriers is like comparing an infant carseat to duct taping your baby into a box and putting the seat belt around it. Everyone w/half a brain should be able to see the difference between them.

Just another example of people believing whatever they hear on TV/radio w/out thinking for themselves or questioning anything.

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Old 03-27-2010, 12:19 PM
 
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Comparing those bag slings to ring slings, wraps and other safe carriers is like comparing an infant carseat to duct taping your baby into a box and putting the seat belt around it. Everyone w/half a brain should be able to see the difference between them.

ZOMG, I'm totally stealing that...

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