Parents are desperately trying to find ways to avoid SIDS by buying different products, but researchers are warning parents of SIDS monitors. Most parents have come across SIDS monitors such as the Owlet Smart Sock.
The Owlet Smart Sock is put on a baby's foot and is linked to the parent's smartphones where they will receive notifications if something happens to the baby's vitals. Owlet advertises their sock by explaining to parents that they get peace of mind because the sock tracks the baby's oxygen level and heart rate. Therefore, mom and dad can simply look at their phone and check the health of their baby. If the baby stops breathing, or the oxygen level becomes low then the phone linked to the sock will alarm. The parent would then be able to rush into the room and save their baby. Seems like the best invention ever, right?
The Owlet might not be as wonderful as it may seem. According to new research, the Owlet might be inconsistent with the actual statistics of the baby. Researchers investigated the Owlet and found that it was giving much higher oxygen levels then the child was actually receiving.
The research was done in a hospital and was conducted by Dr. Christopher P. Bonafide and another individual. They performed a test on 30 slightly ill babies. When the oxygen level of the babies started to get dangerously low the Owlet didn't show any concern with the levels. Therefore, the phone linked to the "sock" was not being alerted. Dr. Bonafide decided to also test another popular SID monitor called Baby Vida (that has since been taken off the market). The Baby Vida was quite dangerous because it wouldn't even detect any sort of dip in oxygen levels. Also, the Baby Vida often would alert the parents of a low heart rate even when the baby's heart rate was perfectly normal with no cause for alarm. Dr. Bonafide decided to begin researching about the SIDS monitors when a baby came into his office after the monitor went off and alerted the baby's parents. It turns out that the baby was perfectly healthy and the SIDS monitor went off for no reason.
Although in a dream world it would be amazing to have a SIDS monitor that worked flawlessly and that could save children. SIDS is a terrifying reality. There are ways to help prevent SIDS, but sometimes babies pass away due to things outside of a parent's control. Parents should not be relying on SIDS monitors to help protect their babies from SIDS, because they are not very consistent and might provide inaccurate results.