A baby can use their swing any time of the day. Many parents use these products to give themselves a little break from the fussing or crying. It doesn’t matter when it’s used as long as it is safe and keeps your little one engaged while you do what you need to do.
But, how long do babies use swings? This question is two-fold since you need to know when your baby is done swinging and how much time is too much. It can also relate to the age your little one might not need a swing anymore, and we will focus on both aspects here.
When Is It Too Much?
As with almost everything in life, too much of a good thing isn’t ideal. If you overeat, you gain weight. If your baby swings too much in the swing, it can have adverse effects. Sometimes, babies can’t ever go to sleep without the motion or they might start fussing all the time if they aren’t in the swing.
It’s usually best to let your little stay in their swing no more than an hour each day. You may think that’s not enough time and it isn’t much but that’s a full hour of swinging.
If your baby falls asleep 10 minutes after swinging, you can transfer them to their bed. You’ve still got about 50 minutes of swing-time left.
Why so Little Time?
Limiting swing usage for babies is beneficial for everyone involved. You need to bond and interact with your baby, and you can’t easily do that when they’re playing in the swing. Again, you can choose intervals of swing time, which meet your needs for doing chores and more.
If your little one starts fussing, put them in the swing for 10 or 15 minutes and then let them out to eat or play. Right before bed, let them be in it a little more to relax and start dozing. It’s never safe to allow your baby to sleep overnight in a swing.
It’s also important to understand that babies who can sit up and move around more shouldn’t use the swing as often or at all. It can become dangerous because your baby wants to move on their own instead of being rocked. They might shift around, and the swing could tip over.
Effects of Swinging
Leaving your infant in the swing too long can cause problems. For one, babies can develop flat heads when they use these products too often.
While rare, some babies can also stop growing correctly and might not develop motor skills as soon. When they’re in a swing, they’re not getting that push-and-pull movement as they would on the ground. Those motions are important to help them learn to walk, and they’re not getting it as often as other babies.
When using a swing with a newborn, it’s important to watch them carefully. Babies under four-months-old slump down, especially when they’re sleeping. Your little one’s airway could get blocked, which could lead to suffocation.
Nap and Feeding Times
Now that you know how a swing could be dangerous, it’s important to use it correctly. Most parents allow their babies to nap in the swing, but it also requires you to keep an eye on them. You could turn off the swing motion once your little one is asleep, but they could still slump down and suffocate.
Instead, it is best to remove them from the swing and put them in their bed. If you can’t do that because your little one won’t stay asleep, you might want to get a bassinet-style swing system. You can position your baby on their back so that they can sleep safely; turn the swing off when they’re asleep, and you can rest, too!
Feeding time is a crazy, messy thing, and it shouldn’t be done in a swing. Most new parents worry that their baby will choke, which is heightened with the movement of the device.
It’s best to feed your little one in a highchair. However, if you have to use the swing, make sure it’s turned off, and the baby is sitting as straight as possible.
When Your Baby Wants Out
For the most part, babies can sit in their swing all day and be content, but there might be indications that your little one wants to get out and do something else. Of course, feeding and changing times are ideal because they need attention anyway.
Babies tend to fuss when they want something, so it’s best to pay attention to the type of cry. If it’s just a little whimper that soon stops, they’re still content. If they seem agitated or fidgety, it’s probably time to take them out of the swing.
Parents have a lot of new things to learn, and one of those is how to do anything by yourself with a newborn. Baby swings are ideal because they’re safe and keep your baby happy, but too much can be detrimental to their development.
How long do babies use swings? The question is important and the answer more so. We’ve talked about when to use these devices and how to tell your little one wants to get out, so you’re more prepared.