If you’re a new mom or even the parent of a toddler and beyond, you will quickly come to realize that sleep is a luxury. And although there are tons of decisions you’ll have to make regarding your toddler’s health and care, the one thing you won’t have any control over is his sleep. So, if he decides to stay up all night and sleep for the better part of the day, there’s not much you can do to change this pattern.
But perhaps there are a couple of baby sleeping aids that can help. One investment you can make is purchasing the best baby pillow. Whether you’re raising a frequent waker or a non-sleeper, a baby pillow can help your little one settle faster and slumber longer.
What are the Best Baby Pillows?
Different toddler pillows come equipped with different features. It’s crucial that you first determine the specific set of features- whether decorative or functional- that you want for your baby pillow. Once you have this figured out, you can then compare and contrast the shortlisted products. Before picking this pillow, ensure you account for your baby’s sleeping habit and the aspects that can help him sleep through the night.
1. Swish Baby Flat Head Pillow for Sleeping
The last news that a new parent wants to get from his pediatrician is that his toddler has flat head syndrome. Put simply; this is a condition characterized by a flattening of a baby’s head because of exerting too much pressure on one spot. Luckily, the Swish pillow is designed specifically to prevent this. It provides just the right head support, allowing your baby to grow healthily.
What’s more, this pillow is made using memory foam, a material that helps to maintain the perfect shape of your toddler’s head. Plus, the foam is 100% hypoallergenic so you don’t have to worry that the pillow will trigger skin allergies or respiratory issues.
Also, the Swish flat head pillow comes with two organic cotton covers. This way, you will always have a clean pillow cover to use in case the other one gets dirty. And the good thing is that these covers are very easy to remove and wash.
2. Little Baby Boo Organic Head Shaping Newborn Pillow
If you’re looking for a baby pillow that can cushion your toddler’s head and also support his neck, Little Baby Boo is the pillow to go for. In fact, this baby pillow is even recommended by pediatricians and osteopathic physicians.
Little Baby Boo is a quality pillow manufactured using CLOUD 9 Organic cotton fabric. This cotton fabric is breathable, enabling your baby to sleep soundly all night long. It also has memory foam and is hypoallergenic.
This baby pillow is suitable for newborns and toddlers aged up to two years. It’s also pretty compact, making it easy to carry when you travel. Another plus of this pillow is that it’s highly versatile. Little Baby Boo can be used for car seat, cradle, bassinet changing mat, bed swing, pushchair stroller, bouncer, and crib.
In case you’re not satisfied with the results of this baby pillow, the manufacturer promises a full refund if you return it within two months of your purchase. But considering how comfy this pillow feels, it’s unlikely that you’ll return it.
3. Laixiulife Baby Protective Pillow
Do you have a friend or colleague who has a newborn? If so, the Laixiulife baby pillow is the perfect baby shower gift. Available in a beautiful beige color, this baby pillow is a favorite for many new moms.
But the jewel in the crown here is how effective this pillow is at maintaining the shape of your toddler’s head throughout the newborn and infant stages. What’s more, it’s made of memory foam, which boasts a breathable design to keep your baby cool at night.
If you’re hesitant to buy baby pillows because you’re concerned about toxic materials, you can rest assured that Laixiulife is completely safe. The only setback is that it has that “fresh-foam” scent, although this dissipates within a few minutes.
You can wash this toddler pillow either by hand or machine. The only thing to be cautious about is to keep the temperature of the water below 30 degrees. Also, you should never use bleaching agents on this pillow.
4. Ashtonbee Newborn Baby Pillow
If you’re looking for a pillow that will help your toddler sleep in the right position throughout the night, the Ashtonbee baby pillow makes a strong contender. This pillow is uniquely designed to facilitate airflow in your baby’s neck region, which helps to improve his sleep. Also, this pillow ensures that your toddler’s head remains aligned to his spine for proper development. With the Ashtonbee baby pillow, flat head syndrome will be a thing of the past.
The baby pillow is recommended for a 1 year old toddler or younger. The memory foam used in its construction is not only hypoallergenic but also bacteria-resistant, and this helps to minimize the likelihood of infections occurring.
Another thing we like about this baby pillow is that it’s small. Measuring 8.7” by 8.3” by 1.18”, this pillow is perfect for parents, who are frequent travelers. Plus, the manufacturer provides a lifetime warranty so you can always return it if you’re not pleased with its performance.
5. Organic Baby Pillow – Cloud Lamb
This baby pillow by JOHN N TREE Organic has the best design. It comes in different funny shapes that will excite your baby and encourage them to stay on the pillow. This particular one has the shape of a cloud lamb. Other shape variations are that of a cat and puppy.
Aesthetics aside, this baby pillow is made of premium quality materials. It’s made of 100% natural organic cotton to give your baby that soft feel. Plus, the hypoallergenic polyester filling is not sensitive to a baby’s delicate skin. As its name suggests, this pillow is made exclusively from natural materials that won’t create any health risks for your baby.
The organic baby pillow can be washed by hand or machine. If you’re washing by hand, keep the temperatures below 30 degrees and if by machine, choose the ‘gentle’ setting. Once washed, the pillow should be laid flat and air dried before being used again.
The good thing with the Organic baby pillow is that it can be used for different purposes. You can use it during diaper changes, nursing or simply place it in his bassinet.
What is a baby pillow?
For most of you, getting a good night’s sleep is almost impossible if you don’t use pillows. Not only do these pillows offer sufficient head support but they also keep your spines straight so that you don’t wake up with back or neck pains. But it’s a little different when we consider babies. Some infants will need to use pillows a couple of days after they’re born. Others, however, don’t use pillows until they attain one year.
So when will you know the right time for your baby to start using a pillow? One of the things you can observe is how comfortable they are when they sleep. If they’re getting up in the middle of the night more often than they usually do, a baby pillow can help. Also, if you notice that your toddler is preferring to lie down on his stuffed toys, chances are, he needs a baby pillow.
Another time that your babies will need pillows is when they’re transitioning from cribs to master beds. You should never use a regular pillow on your little one’s bed because most of them are too big. A baby pillow, on the other hand, is small yet supportive enough for your toddler to snuggle up to it cozily.
A majority of parents neglect just how important baby pillows are. For some parents, these pillows are not a necessity. The truth is, a baby pillow should be at the top of your baby items shopping list. Toddler pillows will significantly improve their sleeping patterns. Furthermore, these pillows are instrumental in warding off conditions such as flat head syndrome, acid reflux, bald spots among others.
Types of Toddler/Baby Pillows on the Market
If you’ve tried shopping for baby pillows, you may have noticed that there are tons of them on the market. Overall, toddler babies fall into one of these five categories:
The title is self-explanatory- these are pillows made of latex. The benefit of using latex material is that it provides excellent neck and shoulder support. Another admirable feature of latex baby pillow is that it’s hypoallergenic, making it ideal for toddlers with sensitivities.
There are different kinds of foam infused into baby pillows. One of the most preferred kinds is memory foam. But regardless of the foam used, this material has the benefit of being durable. Memory foam pillows last up to 8 years.
These are baby pillows filled with man-made fibers such as polyester. Occasionally, natural fibers like cotton are also used to fill toddler pillows. Fiber-filled pillows are some of the most comfortable. They will also provide your little one with ample support.
Contour baby pillows are made using a mixture of materials the most notable of which are memory foam, latex and poly fiber. Contour pillows are mostly recommended for toddlers who are side and back sleepers.
Feather and Down
Some manufacturers use a considerable amount of down when making toddler pillows. Such pillows offer certain perks such as softer texture and providing a higher level of comfort. The only drawback to these pillows is that they are pricier than other types of pillows.
The Importance of a Baby Pillow
One thing that many fail to acknowledge is that toddlers’ needs are entirely different from those of adults. If everyone understood this simple concept, we wouldn’t have people using regular pillows on their babies.
During the first year, an infant’s brain undergoes drastic brain development. But for this growth and development to take place, your toddler requires adequate support, especially when they sleep. Baby pillows are made exclusively for this purpose. These pillows ensure that there’s efficient blood flow in your little one’s brain. Moreover, toddler pillows support your child’s delicate neck, which will also be developing in their first year.
In fact, newborns have zero control over their neck muscles. These infants also don’t have the ability to raise their heads and place them on pillows, which is why they’re designed as full body pillows. This is the one significant difference between baby pillows and adult pillows. Toddler pillows are so designed so they can support your toddler’s entire body.
Another area where baby pillows have proven useful is in tummy time. Ideally, most toddlers prefer to lie on their stomachs rather than their backs. Tummy time is better than back-sleeping as it mitigates the risk of flat head syndrome, which could be caused by too much pressure being exerted on his skull.
Toddler pillows are also ultra-thick and have soft plush. This feature comes in handy since a baby might end up placing his entire weight on their fragile knees once they start learning how to crawl.
If baby pillows are designed to support their entire pillows, then can’t one large pillow suffice? The simple answer to this is No. Although your toddler will fit his tiny mass on a regular large-sized pillow, he won’t get the support he needs. Toddler pillow are uniquely designed with anti-roll contours to prevent them from falling. Using a big pillow poses the risk of your little one falling.
Another aspect to keep in mind is the fact that your toddler’s spine is not fully developed. It is during the first year of his life than his spine transforms into the curved shape that grownups have. The contour in baby pillows supports this natural development. But a regular flat pillow creates a risk of the child developing flat sections on his spine. There’s also the fact that baby pillows are multi-purpose. Unlike regular pillows, toddler pillows can be placed in a stroller, a crib, play mat and more.
Why you shouldn’t give your toddler a regular pillow
If you’ve never come across toddler pillows, then you’re probably wondering whether they’re necessary. In fact, lots of parents question why they can’t use regular pillows.
One thing you need to keep in mind is that regular pillows are designed to support an adult’s head and neck. A toddler does not have the same body size as an adult, making regular pillows unsuitable. In any case, regular pillows will only strain your little one’s neck, head and shoulder muscles. This strain can only translate to restlessness, causing both you and your toddler more sleepless nights.
Toddler pillows take into account a baby’s small body. As stated earlier, these pillows provide full-body support, enabling your child to sleep through the night.
Tips To Choose the Best Pillow for a Newborn Baby
Newborns sleep a great deal. On average, they sleep for between 16 and 17 hours over a 24-hour period. That said, parents need to ensure that they’re providing their babies with the best environment for sleeping. It means removing clutter from their crib and turning down the volume of any music playing devices. But more than that, parents also need to purchase quality pillows that are only designed for newborn. Some of the features recommended for toddler pillows are:
Your baby is not going to like a pillow that doesn’t feel soft. Remember that your toddler has very delicate skin and any rough-textured fabrics could trigger allergic reactions. If your baby keeps waking up in the middle of the night, it’s likely that he doesn’t feel comfortable on the material he’s lying on. Try looking for a baby pillow that not only provides comfort but is also soft.
Another aspect you should pay attention to when purchasing your toddler a pillow is the durability of the material. Ideally, memory foam is the most preferred material because it lasts a long time without wearing out.
Easy To Wash
Newborn babies are likely to drool, throw up and even wet themselves. If they’re lying on the pillow covers when any of this happens, you’ll have to clean the pillows before they can be re-used. If you want to have an easy time, you are better off investing in washable toddler pillows.
Special Baby Pillow Features
During the first few months, toddlers have the highest growth rate. It means that they are likely to outgrow their pillows by the time they celebrate their first birthday. It can be a costly affair if you’re forced to get your little one a new pillow every few months. To prevent this, you should consider getting a pillow that is expandable- one that can meet your baby’s growing needs. Advisably, parents ought to look for pillows wit elastic exteriors. Such pillows are fitted with materials within the seams, allowing them to stretch when needed. On the same note, you should never go for dyed baby pillows as they are made of toxic materials that could harm your baby’s health.
If you’ve just ventured into parenthood, one thing you have realized is that babies can create a lot of mess. They can throw up foods that they don’t like. They also drool and soil themselves from time to time. For these reasons, it would be prudent to get pillows that are machine-washable. Also, the materials used in making toddler pillows should not be ones that absorb odors.
If you have a toddler who doesn’t like to settle down, consider buying a pillow in a funny shape such as an elephant. Such a pillow will capture your child’s attention and entice him into staying on the pillow. Some toddler pillows also come with add-ons such as crinkle books.
For parents living in cities that experience al four seasons, a reversible baby pillow is a brilliant idea. Reversible in the sense that it has cotton on one side and linen material on the other. During fall and winter, you can use side made of cotton so as to keep your baby warm. And if it’s too hot, you can use the side made of linen to help with keeping your toddler cool. Fabric aside, the best baby pillow is one that contains memory foam. Not only does memory foam provide adequate support for your toddler’s delicate body but it’s also long-lasting.
The last factor you should take into account is your baby’s seeping needs. Newborns require tons of items, which could cost you a lot. If you’re looking to save money, consider getting a baby pillow and blanket set. You can then use the money saved to buy other baby essentials.
How to Help Baby Sleep through the Night
As mentioned earlier, babies sleep for extensive periods of time. Unfortunately, some of them aren’t able to nap as often as they’d want to. One technique to boost your little one’s sleep is through white noise. Put simply; this is a special kind of sound that helps to mask other background noises. Simple actions such as turning on a fan can prevent your child from waking up to other sounds such as a ringing phone or a door being slammed shut. Plus, your child will start relating the white noise to his nap time so that the sound always has an effect of lulling him to sleep.
New moms also need to determine the best time to stop giving their toddlers night feedings. Although a pediatrician is the best professional to advise you on this, you can watch out for signs that hint to the fact that your baby doesn’t need night feeding. Moms shouldn’t always sprint to their babies’ side every time they cry at 2 a.m. in the morning. Once your child comes to terms with the fact that he won’t get any milk when he cries, he will spend more time sleeping. At this point, 1 to 3 –ounce serving of milk right before they retire to bed should be sufficient to get them through to the next dawn.
Just like adults, some toddlers have very specific sleep needs. If they’re feeling uncomfortable in their outfits or want more toys in their cot, they might sob until their needs are met. So if you’ve tried everything else and they’re still crying all night, re-examine how you treat and care for them and identify what is missing. You could start by changing up their sleeping wear or adjusting their room temperatures.
Whether or not your toddler is experiencing trouble sleeping, a baby pillow is an important investment. For one, this pillow provides adequate support, enabling him to sleep better. Also, toddler pillows help to prevent flat head syndrome and sleep-related conditions that affect infants. Overall, baby pillows are a small price to pay to improve your baby’s sleep comfort.
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