The SNOO

The SNOO…Sounds like it’s from the Grinch doesn’t it? If you aren’t aware of what it is…it’s a basinet. A basinet that you strap your baby onto and wiggles them all night long.

Parents often ask us what our take is, and it’s a very difficult question to answer.

So I’ll give you my PERSONAL opinion. I think it’s fine, for the first couple of months, on weaning mode. [Weaning mode means it only wiggles and jiggles when they cry and that it doesn’t provide constant motion.] The first six weeks are mainly about survival. If something or someone can get you an extra hour of sleep and do it safely, then god speed. But after 6/8 weeks habits begin to be formed.

The earlier you can teach your baby self soothing skills, the better! If you wait until 4 months to put your baby to sleep awake in their crib….well, let’s just say, did you know we also offer¬†sleep training?

The SNOO is a great TOOL. If you are exhausted and need the baby to nap more than 20 minutes. If you have company or need to make dinner and need something else to wiggle your baby to sleep that is totally understandable!

My primary concern with the SNOO is that it doesn’t allow for any form of self soothing. The moment baby starts fussing it intervenes. Research [and working with tons of babies] has shown us that pausing your initial response to a baby to assess their cry has a direct correlation to babies sleeping through the night earlier! If you listen to them fuss vs running in and soothing them [or a machine wiggling them aggressively] oftentimes they will just fall back to sleep. Sometimes babies make noises in their sleep as well. If we train them to need support in these moments of light sleep then this habit needs to be broken later.

The real question is: Is it worth the money?

If you’re renting it, or if it’s a gift or a hand-me-down, sure take it for your arsenal of baby tools. And if you can afford to purchase it without blinking at the money, then you can likely also afford sleep training when your baby is five months old. However, I’d recommend skipping both and hiring a Newborn Care Specialist to ensure you and your baby are getting the most sleep possible!

SNOO safety

The bonus of the SNOO is that it is a safe sleep space for your baby. They actually claim it’s a SIDS reducer [jury is still out- in my opinion it can definitely be a suffocation reducer.] It follows all of the recommendations and you can definitely use it as a bassinet knowing that your baby is safe and sound throughout the night.

The Doc-A-Tot and likewise products

Not safe. Not recommended. The “Authorities on sleep” do not recommend use of these products for sleep. And we haven’t found that babies sleep changes with or without it. It’s more the parent’s perception on how they sleep because they “look” more cozy in it. Your baby is completely fine in a crib or a bassinet from day one.

If you do choose to use a Doc-A-Tot, please discontinue use when they show signs of rolling. Your baby needs free space to roam in their crib once they are unswaddled. And we also don’t want them stuck with their face in what is essentially a pillow!

 

Anything with an Inline

Not safe for overnight sleep. Let me say this again for the people in the back. “NOT SAFE.” Almost all inclined sleepers have been recalled because of multiple infant deaths. Our concern is also for the development of the baby, and the issue of trying to transition a baby that is used to being inclined onto a flat surface later on. Your baby will absolutely outgrow their swing or their bouncy chair and then you are stuck with an older baby that is really angry about sleeping in a crib! Also- flat heads and torticollis stem from the inability to move their heads freely.

FYI if you have been given a Rock N Play these are included in the No-Nos. They have all been recalled. They are considered safe for awake play, but so many parents were using them overnight and using them incorrectly that they had to take them off the market!

Even for babies with reflux, propping the crib is an outdated recommendation. We recommend an “eat play sleep” schedule instead, so baby has time to digest before being laid down. If your baby is severely uncomfortable while sleeping talk to your doctor about whether belly sleeping or propping up the mattress is a better option for your not rolling infant. [Once your baby is rolling reflux babies tend to be better belly sleepers.]

 

Carseats

I feel I need to sneak this one in there.

Your baby can take carseat naps in the car. Your baby can take carseat naps in the stroller while you are with them. Your baby should not be napping in the carseat when you bring it into the home. The angle in the car and stroller is leveled in a way that is safe for your new little one’s neck to not affect their breathing. That being said- do not leave your baby unchecked even at the “correct” angle for a long period of time. If your baby falls asleep in the carseat you can snap her into a stroller base and hang out with her until she wakes up, or you can transfer her inside when you get home. Never ever overnight. Please and thank you!

 

Tips and Tricks

If your baby isn’t sleeping well without a device, maybe we can help. Check out our other blogs, follow our instagram for little tips, or reach out to us if you’d like to talk to a professional sleep consultant.

About Karina McCarthy

A Rhode Island native who has babies in her blood. A mom to a beautiful daughter and a lover of yoga and long naps.