Expert Reveals 4 Tips to Keep Medically Fragile Babies Warm and Safe this Winter and 3 Things to Avoid
November is Prematurity Awareness Month, but it is not only the month to remember those days in the NICU. It is also a time to start preparing for the winter months and the sicknesses that come with it. From RSV to the flu, preemie babies and medically fragile babies must take caution during the cold months to stay as healthy and warm as possible.
To help parents prepare for the daunting winter months, we contacted Carrie Shaltz Haslup, founder and CEO of Tabeeze, who shares valuable insights on how to keep all medically fragile babies safe this winter.
Easy Access to Medical Equipment
Clothing with snap buttons, zippers, or Velcro closures can really help parents of children who are medically fragile. They allow caregivers and medical professionals quick access to the baby without the need for complete undressing.
“Babies who are premature or have certain breathing issues may go home on oxygen (or with the assistance of other medical equipment), and parents need to learn to adapt to these machines while also prioritizing the baby's needs. Immediate access to babies is also critical as regular checks are needed to continue monitoring the baby's condition,” says Carrie.
Depending on the baby's condition, some pieces of adaptive clothing might be necessary to ensure that the baby is warm. Several brands offer adaptive clothing specifically designed for babies with medical needs to accommodate feeding tubes, braces, and other devices.
“Adaptive clothing ensures the baby is comfortable and that their medical devices function without clothing interference,” advises Carrie.
Choose natural, breathable materials like cotton or bamboo. These fabrics are gentle on a baby's skin and reduce the risk of irritation and allergies.
“Soft fabrics ensure the baby's comfort and significantly lower the chance of skin reactions, which is crucial for those with already compromised health,” comments Carrie.
Dressing the baby in multiple layers makes it easier to adjust to temperature variations. Babies are naturally cooler than adults, so dressing them in one or two more layers than adults is critical for them to maintain their temperature.
“Layering helps your babies learn to control their own temperature, keeping them not too cold or not too hot,” says Carrie.
Things to Avoid
“It is tempting to use a blanket to keep your baby warm, especially when it is so cold outside, but loose blankets can be a hazard for babies when they are in a crib or unsupervised. The best thing is to avoid blankets in general and opt for layering instead,” says Carrie.
“Loose strings or ribbons might look cute on clothing, but they can get entangled with medical equipment or even pose a strangulation risk for your baby. Avoid anything loose on clothing to keep your baby safe,” advises Carrie.
“Overdressing your baby can lead to overheating. Avoid big jackets and instead layer your baby with clothing that is easy to take off,” suggests Carrie.
Keeping your baby warm this winter is possible if you find the right clothing to adapt to their challenges. Follow these expert tips, and you’ll be on your way to keeping them warm and comfortable.
Founded by architect and mother Carrie Shaltz Haslup, Tabeeze (pronounced TAB-ease) is a Los Angeles-based company providing parents and their children with innovative, "fuss-free" clothing solutions that adhere to the most stringent sustainable production practices possible. Tabeeze leads by example in setting a new standard for responsible and sustainable business practices in the baby clothing industry and is proudly 100% GOTS Certified Organic, a Certified B Corporation, and a 1% For The Planet member.
Cover Photo by Nelly Aran