When to Stop Using a Baby Monitor

by Monique Labelle

With the advent of technology, baby monitors are designed to provide first-time parents with a sense of security when their little ones are sleeping in another room. Nevertheless, you might be wondering when to stop using a video monitor. Once your little one turns 6 months to a year old, you may want to stop using baby monitor.

Besides sleeping longer, your baby doesn’t need to feed as much throughout the night. Although you might be itching to keep a watchful eye on your baby, you’re losing out on a good night’s rest. In addition to learning when to ditch the baby monitor, we’ll explore the factors to consider and much more. Read on! 

How to Decide When to Stop Using a Baby Monitor

The truth is that you can pull the plug on the monitor as you please. However, you need to consider the following factors to gain insight into the best option for your household before you ditch the baby monitor.

1. The Age of Your Baby

For some new parents, it takes their kids being able to walk into their bedroom when something’s amiss to know that it’s safe to ditch the monitor. In some instances, you may not hear the baby through the device only to wake up and find your little ninja staring at you from the foot of your bed.

Furthermore, if your child is an infant, you’ll want to hear them from the monitor in case their arm or leg gets stuck in the crib slats. You should also consider your child’s needs regardless of their age. Therefore, you have free rein to keep the monitor even though your child is older, as there’s no harm in that.

2. Your Baby’s Needs

If your little one has an underlying medical condition or is a preemie, you’ll want to monitor them longer than a child without special needs. Moreover, some children require care in the middle of the night, and a baby monitor alerts their parents. That implies it’s never too early or too late to discontinue a baby monitor as it boils down to your child’s needs and acting in their best interest.

3. The Location of Your Baby’s Bedroom

The design of your home can determine whether or not you need to stop using a baby monitor. For instance, if your little one’s bedroom is adjacent to yours, you’ll likely hear them crying or calling out for help without the monitor. However, you may have a big house or be a heavy sleeper.

If the baby’s room is across the hallway or on a different floor, it may be wise to hold onto the device until your child is older. Moreover, a monitor may come in handy for naps when you want to keep an ear out for your baby’s cries.

4. Night Feedings

If your child still depends on nighttime feeding, you’ll want to have the monitor within arm’s reach to hear when they begin to get cranky. Although most kids start weaning off nighttime feeding from 6 months old, every baby is different. The monitor alerts you when your little one is re-adjusting into a more comfortable position or when it’s feeding time.

When to Avoid Ditching the Baby Monitor

At times, unique situations determine when and how long you should rely on the baby monitor. Although these compact devices come in handy on a trip, given scenarios at home may cause you not to ditch the monitor.

1. You’re Sleep Training

No matter the sleep training technique you opt for, you’ll want to keep a watchful eye on your little one. That’s the case, particularly if your child has grown and is old enough to sleep in a toddler bed.

Although watching your little one fight sleep with tears and screams can be gut-wrenching, you’ll need to monitor them closely during the process. Furthermore, you want to ensure you can hear your child when or if they attempt to get out of bed.

If they manage to climb out of their crib, that’s your cue to get a toddler bed instead. After all, you don’t want your little one to sustain injuries in the process. Any specific sleep cycles or sleep problems your child may be experiencing will most likely warrant using a monitor.

2. Your Child Is Unwell

Your baby monitor can be a lifesaver when your child is unwell, and it can bring you some semblance of relief. In fact, most pediatricians will recommend using one. Although you may need to camp out on their floor, it’s useful to keep an ear out from the baby monitor in your own room. For instance, if your child is coughing or sneezing, it’ll undoubtedly keep you awake all night.

3. Your Child Sleepwalks

If your baby is a sleepwalker, you might want to have the baby monitor in hand. After all, you want to ensure your child isn’t unintentionally endangering their life at night. Although an audio monitor functions as it should, the video counterpart will give you a peek into your child’s room if you have concerns about them climbing out of their crib.

If your little one is a sleepwalker, ensure you carry the monitor for your overnight stays elsewhere. Lastly, consider investing in a baby gate if your little one’s bedroom is next to the staircase. It’ll grant you the much-needed peace of mind if you don’t hear your child immediately through the baby monitor.

4. You Want to Communicate With Your Child

While a baby monitor will allow you to speak to your baby, tread carefully. That’s because your child may become cranky at the sound of your voice. After all, they are unable to see you. If that’s the case, you’ll want to hold onto the monitor longer.

Contrarily, if speaking to your little one through the monitor ushers in the convenience of staying in your regular bed without the need to walk to their room, then so be it.

sleeping baby

Source: Pexels

Reasons to Stop Using a Baby Monitor

It’s no secret that you check your baby monitor a few times every night. Even though your little one is resting all night, you might be sleep-deprived. The culprit is the monitor rather than your child.

Although watching your baby drift off to slumberland makes your heart full, staring at the screen throughout the night can negatively impact your sleep and is ultimately detrimental to your health and overall wellbeing.

Additionally, racing to your little one’s room each time you hear a sound through the monitor means you’ll also disrupt their sleep. There’s nothing worse than waking a sleeping child, so each time you go into their room at the slightest whimper, there’s the likelihood you’ll wake them even though that isn’t your intention.

Rather than you and your little one losing sleep, a viable solution would be to tuck the monitor away in your bedside drawer for the night. The monitor will inevitably wake you up repeatedly with each sound you hear, leaving you groggy in the morning. Therefore, you should turn down the volume.

FAQ

Let’s discuss the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions regarding baby monitors.

1. Does a baby monitor need to remain on the entire night?

Since you can plug in the monitor, allowing it to remain on all night, that doesn’t mean it’s a wise move. It boils down to your personal preference. If you continuously check the device through the night, you lose out on much-needed rest.

If you need to wean yourself off the monitor, tuck it into your bedside drawer and make sure it is low volume. By doing so, you can take a peek as you please.

Nevertheless, if that proves futile in preventing you from constantly checking the monitor at night, it might be time to go cold turkey by switching it off.

2. Should you ditch your baby monitor?

Don’t hastily get rid of the monitor because it’s not eco-friendly and will end up in a landfill. Additionally, you may need to bring the baby monitor on your next family trip because your little one may get anxious in a new environment.

Instead of getting rid of the monitor, you can move it to a separate room, such as the playroom, if your little one doesn’t need it in their bedroom. Having it in the playroom is a surefire way of keeping a watchful eye on your child as they play independently.

3. Do you require a baby monitor?

You might be puzzled as to whether the monitor is a worthwhile investment. It boils down to your preferences and needs. It can be crucial in determining whether or not your little one requires your attention. If they are sleeping in their crib but breastfeeding at night, you’ll want to attend to them once they’re up.

Conclusion

A baby monitor grants you much-needed peace of mind when your little one is sleeping in their room as they are within earshot. Once your little one is 6 months or older, you’ll notice the reduced need for the monitor.

Don’t be afraid to archive the gadget and retrieve it as need be. After all, there’s no standard rule on when to stop using a baby monitor. Perhaps you need one for the babysitter, or your sleep habits change, or your baby develops a health condition that need to be monitored, or maybe your baby makes a lot of noises and you want to keep an eye on the child sleep. Whatever the reason, a video baby monitor can help with any fussing during nap time.

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