Saturday, March 20, 2010

Infantino sling recall

Last week I saw some fairly alarming headlines about baby slings being linked to infant deaths. As more news emerged, it turns out that it wasn't a blanket warning about slings in general, but a recall of a specific brand of sling, the Infantino SlingRider bag-style sling:
I'll refer you to Dou-la-la's post on this subject, which includes links to many others discussing the recall and pointing out how to use a sling safely.

Bottom line on sling safety:

Your baby sling should mimic the way you naturally hold a baby--either vertically (chest-to-chest), or diagonally (cradled in your arms). You should be able to see your baby's head and face without pulling aside the sling fabric. Your baby should not be in a curled C-position; keep your baby's airway clear by keeping its head extended, rather than tucked into its chest. See this fantastic illustration by Sleeping Baby:



  1. I was given this sling shortly before the birth of my son, and thought it was very strange because of its box-like structure. However, I gave it a go, and found it very awkward because of how low the baby had to be carried. Then it got recalled because the plastic adjustment buckle could break, and I threw it away because I thought it was so awful and I had a proper ring sling to use. So this current recall is actually the 2nd time that this sling has been recalled. Unfortunately, even though it is basically not a well-designed sling, it's the only sling that seems to be widely available in the mass market (ie it is the only sling that Toys R Us seems to carry) As well as the fact that these recalls inspire fear around baby wearing, I think that the actual sling itself impedes baby wearing, because I've spoken with quite a number of moms who said that they tried carrying their baby in a sling, but "it didn't work". Upon questioning them about the carrier used, this was the sling that they all had used. For most of them, once they had a bad experience, they were unwilling to try again, or spend money on a carrier that would actually work. It's very unfortunate.

  2. I have one of these slings but it is made by Munchkin (from target). I put my baby in it one time and could not find a position for him that would not restrict his breathing. It was impossible. I never used it again. So glad I got a Maya wrap!

  3. I had that sling with my first baby and hated it. He had to be so low down to be carried. It was ridiculous.
    So then I bought a Mobywrap, and a mayapouch.
    Now I have a ring sling as well. lol

  4. Those illustrations are wonderful! Thanks for sharing.

  5. I purchased and Eddie Bauer Sling from Target. I used until my baby was three months old because then he was to heavy to carry in a sling for me. But I found it very useful when shopping. However because I read the instructions and warnings I was very cautious when using the product because a baby can become overheated and have a stroke is what the insert read. So I didn't use it for very long because my baby would began swetting in it. I was very careful to check on him constantly when I used it. I would not recommend a sling to anyone especially new mothers because of their dangers.

  6. I bought a similar "bag" sling when I was pregnant and only used a couple of times. It was uncomfortable because the strap was too thin and cut across my neck. Then I bought a Second Womb sling and I was amazed at the difference. Keeping baby "close enough to kiss" is really key. Reading about this recall sends shivers down my spine, and I'm so glad the bag sling was uncomfortable to me so I stopped using it.

    I've seen comments wondering why anyone would think one of those bag slings would be a good idea, and all I can say is that it's amazing all the things new parents don't know. From babywearing to breastfeeding to diapering, etc, we all have a learning curve.

    To me the bag sling looked cozy, similar to swaddling or those covers for carseats that keep the baby protected from the cold. It seems so stupid to me now, but to my 1st time pregnant self, it made sense. Like everything it comes down to a lack of information.

  7. Maybe you have info I don't, but I have not seen anything about any sort of recall.

    There is just a warning about slings in general, which is incredibly stupid since most slings are perfectly safe and a wonderful product.

    If you read the warnings, it is obvious there is no way you can properly position your baby in a bag sling, and that proper positioning is easy with a bit of practice in most other types of slings. But you have to know a bit about the bag sling, and about the good stuff (like mei tais, wraps, ring slings, and soft structured carriers) to actually get that.


  8. To me the bag sling looked cozy, similar to swaddling or those covers for carseats that keep the baby protected from the cold.

  9. You know I had one of those. And I was even the one who purchased it. It was the only thing locally available. So my money went to Infantino and after trying to use the thing twice, it went into my closet. Horrible product.


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