If today’s grandparents had to take a baby safety quiz, most would FAIL. That’s the gist of a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics. They say that even though our parents and grandparents managed to raise kids of their own before, it doesn’t automatically mean they know what’s best.
For example: A survey found that most grandparents think it’s okay for babies to sleep on their bellies or sides. But many studies show that those positions increase the risk of babies dying from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. And today, it’s recommended that infants sleep on their backs.
Also, 75% of grandparents think it’s okay for babies to sleep in cribs with blankets, or stuffed animals. But again, those things can be dangerous, which is why experts say babies should only sleep with a sheet and mattress in the crib!
Another thing grandparents get wrong? 63% thought it was okay to give water to babies as young as two weeks old. But most pediatricians recommend waiting until babies are at least five months old. That’s because water can easily dilute a baby’s blood, and can cause a deadly condition called Water Intoxication.
So why are grandparents so far off when it comes to baby safety? Dr. Amanda Soong is a pediatrician who says the problem is that our grandparents mostly offer old advice and trusting old advice is like buying an old car. Think about it: With all the new technology and safety equipment that cars have today, why would you ever buy a car that didn’t have seatbelts or airbags? Dr. Soong says advice works the same way. Because today, we have access to better research and information than our parents and grandparents never had! So, bring Grandma and Grandpa up-to-date before they babysit.