Parents-to-be prepare for their baby’s arrival much before the due date. Slowly and steadily, all the necessary items on that checklist are ticked off. From stocking up on baby clothes, feeders and diapers, there’s so much more that parents need to take care. One such aspect is technology, a rather underestimated part of childcare and safety. M&B brings you some nifty tools that will help make parenting a whole lot easier
BY SANIA DHIRWANI
Video Baby Monitor
Don’t underestimate the importance of a baby monitor. From keeping track of your baby’s sounds, to even keeping a close eye on her when she’s in her crib and away from you, a baby monitor becomes a necessity for a busy parent.
● To keep an eye from another room: With a video monitor, parents or caretakers do not need to constantly visit the child’s room. Just by watching in the monitor, parents can be assured of baby’s safety without disturbing their play or snooze time. Baby’s sleep pattern can be disturbed by incessantly checking in on her. Any potential hazards can be avoided just by glancing at the video monitor.
● To track sleep accurately: When you are training your baby to sleep on her own, it’s essential for parents to check how much sleep she is actually getting. When you leave the child alone, it is common for a baby to toss and turn without making any sound. An audio monitor might not be able to track all the movements.
● To provide security: This is one of the biggest advantages. It provides security both outside and inside the crib. As your child will grow, there’s a good chance that she might try to get out of the crib. In the process, she can fall and hurt herself. While you may not be able to completely eliminate potential dangers, you can certainly be aware of them. Morever, if you have a nanny to take care of your baby, you can monitor the nanny’s actions and ensure she’s providing your child with the care he needs.
● Sound interference: In wireless video monitors, there may be some irksome and buzzing sounds. These sounds can be caused by other wireless devices around the house like the wireless phone or wifirouters, that can interrupt the signal and cause disturbances.
● Limited range: Video monitors maybe free from the clutches of wires but they do come with a limited range
for hassle-free viewing. If you travel beyond a certain range, your phone might not be able to track your baby’s movements as you are not in the required frequency range.
● An expensive investment: Most working parents have a set budget for their expenses. Purchasing a video monitor can be an expensive affair, especially if you are opting for special features like wireless and HD camera.
● Select a video monitor which delivers a longer range and creates less interference.
● Size does matter. Purchase a one that has a small receiver that can be easily carried around the house. Select the one that can be connected with an existing smart device you own.
● Low-battery indicator is one of the important features you should look out for. Get a monitor that lets you know with an alarm or fl ashing lights that you need to change the batteries.
● Some latest monitors tracks your baby’s vital signs. For example, a video monitor will alert the parents if the baby hasn’t moved recently, keeps track of the temperature in your baby’s room and even gives predictions when your baby will be awake.
● Many video monitors feature infrared light or night vision so you can see your baby on the monitor even when she’s asleep in a dark room.
Electric Breast Pump
With the increasing need for two incomes, and the maternity leave policies being three months in some companies, nursing mums tend to wean there babies earlier than required. Owning a breastpump helps take away the feeding worry for mums resuming work post birth.
● Effi cient and ease-of-use: An electric pump helps you to extract more milk in less time, a useful tool for busy mums. Unlike a manual pump, the work is automatically done for you at a pace that you preset. This saves you from aching hands or difficult-tomaintain pumping patterns.
● Available in multiple types: There are a plethora of options available in the market that suits different needs of a mother’s lifestyle. Vishvanath Kanan, Medela, says, “Mothers with premature or low birth weight babies can opt for a two-phase double electric breast pump like freestyle that mimics baby’s natural sucking pattern, and thus increases and maintains milk production. Double pumped milk is also high in energy content and therefore benefi cial for preterm and low birth weight babies.” Further adding, he says, “Working mothers on the other hand can use electric pump and save a lot of time compared to manual pumps. A double electric pump in particular can save up to two hours of pumping daily.”
● Best alternative to breastfeeding: From an improper latch, inverted nipple or even busy schedules, breaspumps can be a great time saver. An electric breast pump solves maximum of your problems and is one of the most useful gadgets a new mother should own. Your baby will still be taking pure breastmilk even when you are away or are outdoors and finding it inconvenient to breastfeed your baby in a public space. Rajesh Vohra, CEO, Artsana, says, “Chicco NaturalFeeling electric breastpump is designed to extract milk in an effective, practical and delicate way. The extra soft silicone cup gently envelops the breast and the special texture ensures a soft and delicate contact on the skin. Mothers can adjust the flow level that best suits her needs. It can operate through power cable as well as with battery.”
● Cannot be carried everywhere: Some workplaces do not give you the privacy of pumping. The process of carrying the entire kit everywhere can itself be cumbersome.
● Hampers emotional bonding: According to some studies, pumps cannot act as a substitute for the mother. It cannot replace the motherbaby bonding that breastfeeding ensures. Excessive use of a breast pump can also interfere with the milk production.
● A noisy device: The downside of electric pumps are not as portable as battery or manual breast pumps. They tend to be more noisy and its hard to express discreetly with the sound of an electric motor thumping away. It is also dependent on an external power source.
● Mr Vohra says, “The expression must be soft and gentle, otherwise it maybe uncomfortable for the mother. Adjustable flow rate is also an important feature as all mothers have different comfort levels. It should have an easy grip considering the mother has to hold it for a while. Make sure the material of the pump is BPA free.”
● Select a model that allows you to pump both breasts at once. It will cut the pumping time by half, and doublepumping also boosts milk production by emptying both breasts. Look for one that comes with a case.