Jiggling head while rocking = shaken baby????? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 11:22 AM - Thread Starter
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My husband thinks I'm such a spaz, but this really has me worried now and I just wanted to get some feedback, good or bad.

My LO is almost 6 months now and lately he hasn't been falling asleep at my boob during bedtime like he was before. So, we've had to find different ways of getting him to sleep - plus he puts up a struggle because he's afraid of missing something. Anyway, he loves to be rocked to sleep and we have a hammock that really helps out. But he'll be growing out of that hammock soon and so I've been trying to find a way to rock him myself, with just my body. It turns out that I can rock him to sleep on my own, but he prefers a really fast rocking motion, fast and short if that makes sense. Well, when I do this, his head jiggles even though I have him in my arms and am supporting his neck. I think it's this head jiggle he likes because when I try to stop his head from jiggling so much, it doesn't work to put him to sleep. But I'm concerned about Shaken Baby Syndrome. My husband says I don't have to worry because people rock their babies like that all the time and their babies are fine. I know I've seen people rock and jiggle their babies but it's hard for me to tell when it's too rough. Does that make sense? Anyone have any words of wisdom for me?

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#2 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 11:54 AM
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I think it's fine. I think shaken baby is more about actually taking the baby by the arms and shaking them, hard, not at gentle head jiggle. My dd only falls asleep with her back patted firmly (like burping) and bounced a little.
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#3 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 11:58 AM
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IMHO, baby jiggling is a time-honored method of infant soothing, and equally as safe as rocking or swaying. i think it's one of those things mothers do almost instinctively, and I think that it poses no danger whatsoever as long as the baby is well supported--held close to your body, but not held so tightly as to be immobile.

I think the reason so many babies like vibrating bouncers, etc. is because such a device approximates this natural jiggling motion, and it is very soothing. I think you have nothing to worry about!

Sarah, Queen of Hearts, raising a Full House with Michael, King of my Heart!
DS (2/02), DD (3/04), DS (1/06), DD (12/07), and DS (3/10)
~~*~~Not your typical Pastor's Wife!~~*~~
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#4 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 12:05 PM
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I saw this on Good Morning America or something years ago. A mom was concerned she was shaking too much (like playing ride-a-little-horsie) on her knee. The ped showed her what shaken baby really looks like with a doll. He literally picked it up by the shoulders and shook it as hard as he could. It was intense.

A little swaying, bouncing, riding on the knee is nothing.

It also helps you realize that no one "accidentally" gives their kid shaken baby.
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#5 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 02:54 PM
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IIRC Shaken Baby is when they've been shaken so hard that it's caused the brain to bounce around inside the skull and bleed. I don't think you can do that by accident.

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

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#6 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 03:12 PM
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I used to be worried about accidentally causing SBS, but then saw an episode of Law & Order: SVU where the medical examiner displayed that it couldn't be done on accident. You have to shake as hard as possible until the head snaps back and forth. You're fine.
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#7 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 05:39 PM
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You aren't a spaz. My husband and I were having this conversation last night, in fact. DS has recently only been going to sleep when I bounce him dancing to fast music. He was worried I was "shaking him". I told him I really didn't think so and he said, "well go ask the MDC'ers!"
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#8 of 9 Old 08-11-2008, 06:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for putting my mind at ease. Kdaisy - looks like I did your work for you by posting first. Direct your hubby to this thread.

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#9 of 9 Old 08-12-2008, 03:03 PM
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A local engineering company came and spoke to my class once and one of the things they'd helped develop was a doll with a brain that would light up to indicated damaged areas when a certain amount of force was applied. And this was based on all the medical data and such. The engineers said that they were really surprised at how hard they had to shake to make the doll activate. One of them even mentioned not being able to do it hard enough because he was afraid he'd shake the head off the doll instead of just shaking the brain inside the clear skull.
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