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Baby swing – parents’ lifesaver or unnecessary expense?

Opinions on baby swings are divided. Some parents can’t imagine their lives without it, while for other it is a superfluous gadget. Many parents ask: Is the baby swing really so useful and worth buying? And if yes, what features should it have?

Let’s start from the beginning.

Why baby swings are popular and what are they made for?

Babies love swinging, rocking, cuddling and hugging. In parents arms they fell safe and warm. It helps them to calm down. However, if parent had to rock the baby before each nap or every time baby is fussy or crying, it would be really tiring. It’s easier with newborns, when they weigh 6 or 7 pounds, but when the baby gets older and heavier, after few minutes of rocking and swinging your arms start to hurt you. That’s why the baby swings are so popular.

Of course many people say that baby shouldn’t be used to rocking or falling asleep when swinging, but sometimes this is the only way to put kids to sleep or sooth them. Sometimes parents are so tired that they desperately need a help – and here comes the baby swing. Sometime they have to do the housework or just need a moment for themselves and baby swing can be very helpful in those moments.

If your baby wasn’t colic or went through teething phase very calmly, you’re lucky! However, many parents have to struggle with colic and teething baby who is fussy and tearful because of these issues. Many parents have problems with putting their babies to sleep and comforting them when they cry. These parents find baby swings very useful and helpful, especially during the first few months.

When baby swings are most useful?

  • When infant is colic or teething and swinging comforts him.
  • When baby falls asleep only during rocking and swinging, but he is too heavy to cuddle him in arms for longer time.
  • When you need a safe and comfortable place where your baby can play, develop fine motor skills, vision and hearing.
  • When you need to do housework and you can’t leave your baby in a crib, because he would start to cry. If you need to cook a dinner or clean your house you just bring the baby swing with you, put your baby in it, fasten the 5-point harness, and you can take care of your duties. During cooking or cleaning, you can talk to your baby. Moreover, the child probably will be very interested in what you are doing. And there are so many unknown, interesting things in the kitchen!
  • When you are invited or hosting a dinner. Lying on a bed will be probably boring for the baby and he would prefer to be cuddled in arms, but you want to eat dinner. Baby swings with overhead toys and melodies will be perfect, safe space for the baby in this situation.
  • When mom doesn’t remember when was the last time she read a book, watched a movie or spend time with her friend. In baby swing your child will be secured and occupied, at least for some time, which you can use for yourself.

Contrary to the opinion of some parents, baby swings are not design for “lazy” parents, but for parents who also have to do the housework, work at home or just need some time for themselves.

What to look for when buying baby swing? What features are necessary?

There are few things that parents need to keep in mind when they are looking for the right baby swing.

  • Size and weight

Before you decide to buy particular model, check its dimensions, especially if you have a small apartment or want to use it in different (and small) rooms. Think about how much space this baby swing will take. You have to be sure it will fit into your apartment. If you plan on moving it from one room to another it should be light enough, so you could easily lift it.

  • Folding

 Baby swing is more portable is you can fold it. Many models have pretty wide footprint, so they may not go through the doorways. That’s why if you want to use baby swing in different room, you should be able to fold it.

Compact fold is also useful if you want to travel with it or want to take it for overnight visit to grandparents.

  • Motion

Some baby swings offer just one motion from side to side, while other features also back-to-forth movement. There are also modern baby swings that imitate natural movements that parents do when they comfort their baby. Usually baby swings features many speed setting and additional vibrations. The more versatile baby swing is, the better. During moving the swing should make loud noises which would disturb baby sleep.

  • Seat

The best seat features recline, 5-point harness to keep baby securely in place and nice soft padding which can be easily removed and throw into the washing machine. The seat should be roomy and have capacity that will allow you to use it at least for few months.

  • Other useful features

It’s nice when baby swings is equipped with overhead bar with toys that stimulate baby’s vision and encourage baby to reach and grasp. It’s also useful when swing plays melodies or white noises which can sooth or entertain the baby.

What to keep in mind before buying baby swing?

Remember that baby shouldn’t lie in baby swing to much (few hours), because it may have negative influence on his spine. If you use it to put baby to sleep, you should move your baby to crib or bed when he falls asleep.

Also keep in mind that baby swings have really wide price range. There are models that we can purchase for around $60 and models that costs $300. Don’t focus on the brand, you don’t have to choose the most expensive and fancy baby swingScience Articles, cheaper models also have many great and helpful features.

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Zooey Barnett is mom of three and blogger on Little Baby Gear where she recommends the best baby strollers, baby swings and other useful products for kids and parents. On her blog you can not only read reviews of many strollers, but also find ranking of the best gift ideas for baby.

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