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A guide to baby monitors

Written by Emma Dawson • Online since 4.10.2017 • Filed under Feature • From Issue Fifteen - October to December 2017 page(s) 24
A guide to baby monitors

A baby monitor is one of the top items on your shopping list when preparing for your baby’s arrival. It’s an important piece of kit that provides security, convenience and reassurance. So, what do you need to know when choosing a baby monitor?

A baby monitor usually has two units – one that you place in the baby’s room and the other that you have with you, wherever you are. There are three general options on offer – an audio devise, an audio device with motion sensor pads, and video monitors.

Audio device

Traditionally, the most common of the baby monitors is an audio device. A transmitter is placed in the baby’s room and the second unit, the receiver, is kept with you. Any sounds your baby makes are transmitted to your receiver so that you can hear your baby.

Audio with motion sensor pads or breathing monitors

With this setup, in addition to a transmitter and receiver, you also have a sensor mat, which you place under your baby and then plug into the transmitter.

This monitor is designed to sound an alarm if your baby stops breathing for a set amount of time. However, it has been noted that these monitors can be very stress inducing for parents because it’s not uncommon for babies to have pauses in their breathing. On the contrary, they are helpful and may be recommended by your doctor if your baby is premature or has breathing difficulties. If you do get one of these monitors, always follow your doctor’s advice in the case of an emergency.

Video monitors

Video monitors have a camera that is mounted in your baby’s room. They transmit visual and audio signals. In some cases, these monitors also have night vision (for when the lights are off) and sensor pads.

The benefit of the video option is that after a quick check on the monitor, if your baby is sleeping, you can go back to sleep without having to get up. The higher-end video monitors will connect to your home network using your Wi-Fi connection or external cloud services. With a smartphone, parents can connect via the Internet when at work or out on a date night to check on their children. An added benefit is that these monitors also double up as nanny cams.

Testing and backup

Whichever unit you buy, opt for a mains and batterypowered unit that allows you the greatest flexibility and won’t stop working if the power goes out. Also, remember to test your monitor. The thickness of your walls, size of your house, and interference from radios, phones and nearby devices, will all affect the monitor’s range and signal quality.

Issue Fifteen - October to December 2017

Issue Fifteen - October to December 2017

This article was featured on page 24 of Babys and Beyond Issue Fifteen - October to December 2017 .

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