Warning on Sling-Style Infant Carriers
Thirteen infant deaths reported over the last twenty years, resulting from sling-style infant carriers, have prompted the Consumer Product Safety Commission in the U.S. to issue warnings on the use of such baby carriers.
Hip and trendy parents have popularized the use of sling-style baby carriers which allow them to actually “wear their babies”. However, thirteen infant deaths that were reported over the last twenty years have prompted the Consumer Product Safety Commission in the U.S. to issue warnings on the use of sling carriers. Twelve of these deaths involved infants who were younger than four months.
In their announcement, the CPSC said that sling infant carriers pose risks for suffocation for very young babies as the fabric can press against a baby’s nose and mouth, thus blocking an infant’s breathing. The way a baby is positioned in the sling can also restrict a baby’s ability to breathe leading to suffocation within just a few minutes. A sling called Infantino has been highly criticised because it causes a baby to fall into a curved or “C” position while inside the carrier thus posing suffocation risks for babies.
However, sling-style baby carrier manufacturers said that not all slings are dangerous. They added that parents should just be educated on the proper use of a sling to prevent tragic incidents from happening. Experts advise parents to be more cautious when using sling-style infant carriers, especially for babies younger than four months. They said that the safest types of baby carriers to use are the styles which allow babies to rest securely against a mother’s or caregiver’s body in an upright position.