Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Are baby monitors necessary?
Short answer is no. Baby monitors came into being to give busy parents peace of mind.
Perhaps you’re a stay-at-home mom or dad who has other things to do besides sit and stare at the new addition to your family. Maybe you have a nanny (or granny!) to look after your baby while you’re at work.
Both scenarios require you to be able to keep a beady eye on your infant or toddler, preferably without opening their nursery door and waking them up!
Are Wifi monitors secure?
As much as smart technology has made life easier and more convenient for people, the Internet of Things has introduced uncertainty into everyday objects, including those in domestic spaces.
When we use connected devices, we open ourselves up to a potential loss of privacy. There’s an unsavoury element where hackers can get access to our cameras and speakers for spying, stealing and other criminal activity.
There are ways to prevent this. Taking our virtual security seriously means using optimal password protocols for devices and routers, and updating the firmware on our gadgets as often as possible.
For the ultra-cautious, going old-school is probably the only course of action and that involves avoiding WiFi-enabled smart gadgets altogether.
Can Baby Monitors Prevent SIDS?
No. Baby monitors are not approved by the USFDA for the prevention of SIDS.
The vast majority of cot deaths, about 90%, occur within six months of a baby being born. Once a baby reaches its first birthday, it moves past this vulnerable stage and parents can breathe a sigh of relief.
The general consensus is that room-sharing for the first 12 months, and ensuring your baby sleeps on its back, is the best defence.
Having said that, some of the better models can accurately give vital readings and alerts, and motion sensors can detect if a baby has changed its position.
Parents are cautioned to use these devices only after familiarising themselves with the relevant knowledge. For example, what the normal parameters are, as well as conditions that the monitor cannot detect such as obstructive apnea. Knowing how to administer baby CPR is a given.
Are Baby Monitors Safe?
Before you ever had a new baby to think about, you might have seen warnings about microwaves and electromagnetic radiation emitted from many of the devices we use, including our cellphones and WiFi routers.
Studies investigating the link between these devices and cancer have had inconclusive and contradicting results thus far. What is certain is that all radio frequencies are a possible cause of various illnesses and further research is being conducted as you read this.
Many baby monitors use technology which is similar to what hospitals use but if you’re still concerned, there are precautions you can take which minimize exposure for you and your baby.
For starters, make sure that the unit in your baby’s room is at least 1.8m away from the crib. Limit signal exposure by putting the device on only at night, during naps or when necessary. You could choose to get a low emission analog monitor but they tend to have a poor signal quality which defeats the purpose.
The Infant Optics DXR-8 is worth considering if you’re worried about your baby’s health. It lets you switch from high-frequency video to low-frequency audio when that suits you. It also has voice-activated features which maintain low-frequency functionality.
It’s important to remember that the only faculties you can truly rely on are your own senses. Even when they’re hacker-proof and cords and monitors are safely placed at least 1m away, gadgets can be glitchy. Best practice involves using them in conjunction with your watchful eyes, ears and instincts.