All swings we review are certified by the American Society for Testing and Materials. ASTM for short, and therefore can be trusted for the safety of your child.
Our weighting metrics have been set to a minimum of 5 percent. However, just because we have set it at this level, you should by no means consider this the end all and be all of safety when looking at baby and infant swings. We will highlight some general safety recommendations on this page and we hope these will assist you in choosing an adequate and most of all, safe baby swing for your child.
Is the recline adequate?
A baby that is 4 months old, younger, lacks the ability to control their head and neck properly. Therefore, you should be looking at the recline of the baby swing and ensuring that it provides the something that is in the range of 45 to 60 degrees from horizontal recline. This will prevent a baby, or infant, from slumping over. If you should choose anything greater than 45 degrees, you must ensure that the swing at least a 5 point harness that acts as a shoulder restraint.
Is the base stable enough?
Any swing you use, should have a stable and wide base. This will allow you to feel comfortable in the fact that it will not collapse or tip over.
Is there a harness included?
Whether it be a baby swing, a high chair, or simply child seat for your car, making sure a harness is included is a very important piece for your child. A 5 point harness is far more preferable to a 3 point harness due to the fact that they add restraint to the upper body and not just the lower body. A 5 point harness also prevent a child from slumping or sliding down in their seats. This is why we rate baby swings with 5 point harness considerably higher than those with 3 point harnesses. The Graco – Comfy Cove, Fisher Price – My Little Snugabunny, and Graco – Duet Soothe all have 5 point harnesses and therefore some of our favorites. The fact that heavier straps are included with the Duet Soothe and Snugabunny, make them easier to layout in a star position than it was with the Comfy Cove. The fact that in order to make the Comfy Cove’s harness as easy to work with as the others involved the removal of the crotch and strap pads was a bit of a turn off but nothing to seriously make us turn away from this otherwise excellent baby swing.
Baby Swing Safety Tips:
Infant Swings, Baby Swings, Strollers, safety seats, slings, and carriers are not meant for a child to sleep in. This is very important to remember. Allowing them to sleep in these types devices risks possible suffocation due to the possibility of obstruction to the airways. Any infant, or baby, one years old or younger should always sleep on their backs and up to 2 months of age, should be swaddled. After 2 months of age, you should replace the practice of swaddling with a baby sleep sack.
Baby Swings and Sleep
While baby swings soothe an infant quite effectively, and do so very efficiently with the nine to twelve age, they should never be used for sleeping. The American Academy of Pediatrics states quite clearly that you should never allow a baby swing to be used for sleeping. Herein lies one of the issues parents face, they do such a good job of soothing a baby that quite often, babie fall asleep. So what can you do about it? When using devices such as a carrier, swing, sling, bouncer, car seat, etc…, should your infant fall asleep, remove the as soon as possible from the device and lay them down on their backs, upon a firm surface, to sleep. Yes, this is definitely easier said than done in some cases, more so when a baby doesn’t like to be disturbed or you are simply exhausted. However, always keep in mind, that you should have a close eye on your infant at any time they are in a baby swing. Also, making sure your child is properly removed from an infant swing at the right times will help prevent positional plagiocephaly, or early age deformation of the bones.
Age and Weight Limits
Weight and age limit parameters are very clearly set for Baby Swings nowadays. The swings we are talking about here fall within the six to eight months range. This is point in time when a typical baby is crawling or sitting upright on their own. A baby who can simply sit up on their own is not likely to tangle themselves horribly, so the differentiation between three point and five point harnesses is not a great concern. With that said though, a crawling baby could quite easily escape a 3 point harness leading to very dire consequences. The baby swings we are listing here have weight limits of twenty five to thirty pounds and should be adhered to as these swings are not designed to handle anything more.
Swing Strength Adjustment
As your baby gains weight, you will find that you need to adjust your baby swings strength. You should always have your swing set to the lowest setting for newborn or small babies, as a higher strength can be far too rigorous for a newborn. Adjust the speed, or strength, as your infant matures, and you will find they have a far more soothing and relaxing ride.