Features to Look for in a Baby Swing

A baby swing is on the must-have list for new babies. It gives the baby the comfort of a gentle rocking motion, which is soothing, and gives the baby a chance to learn to self soothe without being held constantly. Parents also get a break if baby is happy and comfortable for a little while.

What kind of features are desirable in a baby swing? Which are the most important ones, and which extras are worth the money? Check out these valuable suggestions before you go shopping.

  1. Most Important Feature: Safety
    Of course, the baby's safety in a baby swing is the very first priority. Safety features include stability and a seat belt. Stability means that the center of gravity is low enough to prevent the swing from toppling if bumped, or if the baby starts to lean. The seat belt should run between the legs and across the lap, and there should also be a shoulder harness that runs from above and meets the lap belt around belly button level. This is called a five-point harness, and it provides the best safety. If the baby is not strapped in securely, she could slide through and get into an uncomfortable or unsafe position.
  2. Ease of Use
    You're going to want the least-disruptive way to get the baby in and out of the swing. Open-top swings provide the easiest access for lifting the baby out or putting him in. A tray that swings up and out of the way makes it much easier to place or remove the baby without the need for maneuvering around it. When you want your sleeping infant to remain asleep, or you need to get him out without waking him, these features will really be helpful.
  3. Variable Seat Back Position
    Newborns can't sit up, so they need to be securely strapped in while reclining in order to be safe in a baby swing. Since you will find the swing useful for your newborn, this feature is a must-have. Look for a few different settings so your baby can grow and still be comfortable in the swing.
  4. The Sound Factor
    The wind-up variety of baby swing may seem smart, because you don't have to purchase batteries. However, wind-up swings are louder and require occasional re-winding, possibly at a time when you want to be especially quiet, such as during the baby's nap. Battery operated swings are simply quieter and will run as long as you like.

    Many baby swings now come with a selection of music and sounds. If you are interested in this feature, be sure you choose one with a variety of music or sounds because your baby, and you, will develop a preference. Womb, ocean, forest and classical music are pleasant to most people, while tinny sounding music box melodies can get old fairly quickly, at least for parents.

  5. The Rocking Motion
    Baby swings now come with variable rocking speeds and a choice between side-to-side or front-to-back motions. These are all handy features to have; babies are all different, and yours may love being rocked from side to side. You want to learn your baby's favorite motions because it will make soothing her easier and faster. Speeds are most important if you have to choose, and motion direction is secondary.
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