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  • Baby Sleep Safety: When Can My Baby Use a Pillow?

    Pillows offer comfort, but they are not safe babies until a certain age.
    by Lei Dimarucut-Sison .
Baby Sleep Safety: When Can My Baby Use a Pillow?
PHOTO BY @DimitarOmi/iStock
To read this story in Tagalog, click here.
  • Teaching independence is a long process that requires patience and consistency. For instance, a parent must learn to step back and stop herself from, say, putting away her child's toys. “Habitually doing things for your child that she’s capable of doing herself sends an inadvertent message that you don’t have confidence in her abilities," psychologist Jeanne Williams said.

    Besides chores, there are other ways to teach your child independence. Letting him sleep on his own bed is one of them.

    It is a common practice among Filipino parents to co-sleep with their babies from the time they are born despite the American Academy of Pediatrics' (AAP) recommendation. According to AAP, infants should "sleep in the parents’ room, close to the parents’ bed, but on a separate surface designed for infants, ideally for the first year, but at least for the first six months."

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    Your baby's sleeping surface should be free of soft objects like pillows, bolsters, and bumper pads as they increase the risk of entrapment, suffocation, or strangulation for your little one. So when is your baby safely allowed to have a pillow?

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    According to Child Safety Experts, "it is important to wait until they are 2-3 years old to introduce other bedding " when he transitions into his own bed. A toddler pillow is smaller than a typical grown-up pillow, and it is usually thin and firm.

    During the toddler stage, kids would have already developed the strength to sit or change positions as they sleep, so a pillow may not be likely to suffocate them as it would an infant.

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    When choosing the right pillow, Dr. Elizabeth Murray, M.D., a pediatrician at Golisano Children's Hospital in Rochester, New York told Romper that pillows with a feather or a fiberfill will work as long as there are no allergy issues.

    She also recommends adding protection in the form of a pillow lining. "A pillow-lining cover in addition to a traditional pillowcase might be helpful because a lot of toddlers drool in their sleep," Dr. Murray said.

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    Frequent washing and cleaning of the pillows, especially during cold and flu season, may be necessary to prevent the spread of germs.

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