Winter has arrived, and radiators across the country are cranking to life–if you have a newborn, you’ll probably be especially aware of keeping them cosy; but overheating is as much a danger for little ones as the chill factor.
While you (or your cat) may be fine to snuggle up to a radiator, there are 3 risks associated with letting your baby sleep to close to the heating:
- risk of overheating
- risk of burns
- risk of strangulation for older babies–as radiators under windows can be close to blind cords
Health adviser Sheila Merrill for the RoSPA (the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) explains the risks:
“We recommend keeping baby’s cot away from radiators due to the potential for serious, life-changing burns. A child’s skin is four times thinner than an adult’s so even the slightest contact with hot surfaces can cause serious pain and scarring.”
“Another issue is that that majority of radiators tend to be underneath windows, which poses problems for slightly older children who can stand – they may be in danger of becoming tangled and strangled by blind cords.
“We recommend all parents remove blind cords fitted before 2014, and replace them with cordless blinds or those that have safety devices such as cleats and breakers.”
The Lullaby Trust also emphasises the importance of regulating the temperature in your baby’s sleeping environment; the chance of SIDS is higher in overheated infants–
“Babies need a cooler room than most people might assume.” The recommended safe room temperature is 16-20ºC (60.8-68ºF). Never rely on how hot or cold you perceive the room to be–use a room thermometer. And keep the cot away from heat sources.