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Can my baby sleep in a baby capsule?

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By Mim Jenkinson

Some babies find it hard to settle in their car seat, whereas others drift off to sleep the moment the car is in motion.

But how safe is it to let your baby sleep in a baby capsule?

One of the reasons parents invest in purchasing a baby capsule is that baby’s find them snug and secure, and this helps them to feel comfortable and relaxed.

So much so, they can often fall to sleep very quickly, which can be tempting for parents to leave their baby sleeping too long.

Benefits of a baby capsule

Capsules can make travelling and being out and about with your newborn baby much easier too. They can be easily clipped in and out of the car and on to some strollers.

Busy parents find this kind of travel system works very well for their active life. It helps them get around with less fuss than a traditional convertible car seat.

If a baby has fallen asleep in their capsule, many parents move them from house to the car or even to the pram, without waking them. They can use the handle on the capsule to carry them, one-handed, and easily get around.

Is it a win/win for both parents and babies?

Red Nose guidelines

When it comes to allowing your baby to sleep in a capsule, Red Nose has clear guidelines and their recommendations on this matter. They say:

“Once the car journey is over it is very important that you remove baby from the car seat or capsule, even if this means waking baby, because it is not safe for baby to spend long periods in car seats, capsules or infant seats.”

Research has shown that:

  • babies left in a sitting position for a long period of time may be placed at increased risk for sudden infant death.
  • car or baby seats may cause baby’s neck to flex forward, which may block baby’s airway.
  • falls from car seats used outside of the car are common and represent a significant source of head injury for baby. Never leave baby in carriers on shopping carts, counters, or other high locations.

Red Nose firmly recommends that if your baby has fallen asleep, you should not allow them to sleep in their capsule for a long period of time. You should remove them from the capsule, even if that means waking them up in the process. 

You can read more about Red Nose’s advice for creating a safe sleeping environment for your baby here, including tips on finding the right car seat.

How to get a sleepy baby out of the car

This brings us on to what many parents call ‘the transfer’: the act of removing your baby from their car seat without disrupting their sleep.

It’s the ‘new parent’ dance that many of us dread but often do so on the daily.

However, as much as we value our babies sleep, their safety is clearly much more important and allowing your baby to sleep in their car seat for long periods is not recommended.

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