‘116 beats per minute and 94% oxygen. Rory’s readings are normal. Phew.’
This is not the first time that my anxiety has calmed down by reading the app connected to my son’s foot.
I thought, having already had two children before, that I was in a good position and that I would be calmer to have a newborn again. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case and my anxiety started to skyrocket.
It started in September 2020, when I got pregnant with my third child.
This was my fifth pregnancy but my third baby. I was paranoid that something was going to go wrong again.
Rory was conceived after an ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage, so after he was born, I went into mama bear fashion.
He was a hard-earned and long-awaited rainbow baby and I wanted to protect him at all costs.
Enter the Owlet, a smart sock that fits on your baby’s foot to monitor their oxygen levels and heart rate, as well as their sleep patterns.
When the baby is sleeping, you can also sleep, knowing that an alarm will go off if something goes wrong, as the sensor connects to an app on your phone.
Other people might be skeptical, but I don’t care – I sincerely believe the owl saved my son’s life.
A few times he slept on his face and his oxygen dropped below 74%. I woke up with an alarm and went over to him and flipped him on his back. I’m afraid to think of what could have happened if I hadn’t known.
It has also helped boost my confidence when it comes to sleeping with Rory. I know many parents worry that they will roll over on their baby, or have a duvet cover their face (I take the covers off just to make sure that won’t happen), or their baby will fall bed.
With the Owlet, I have peace of mind knowing the alarm would alert me if something like this happened.
I wanted to buy the device when I had my daughter in 2017 but my husband thought it was overkill.
With Rory, my husband understood that things had changed. When the worst has happened, it’s harder to ignore things.
I was anxious and wanted to keep our precious rainbow baby safe.
While it helps solve my security issues, Owlet also gives great information that can help with sleep training.
The app tells you how long baby slept and how deep the sleep was. It even lets you know how quickly they fell asleep and how many times they woke up.
This is useful because you can change the duration or times of their naps.
Having had three children in seven years, I know the value of a good night’s sleep. Now I am aware that this is something I haven’t had since my first born.
Even when my other children were sleeping, I couldn’t rest myself and watched them constantly.
My husband would love it now and wishes we bought it for our other kids.
I discovered the sock in one of those pregnancy packs that midwives give to mums – brochures full of advice on pregnancy and childbirth and also a shopping guide.
No one in my prenatal group had bought one – but a few had heard of them and were considering buying one.
That’s the good thing about getting to know other parents – being able to try and error as a group and get instant product reviews before committing to them.
Technology has come so far since my first child was born seven years ago. There are so many amazing products that I have used to help ease my worries and burdens.
There’s the Elvie, a breast pump you put in your bra, so you can walk around and get on with your day.
I’m also testing a new product called Glow Dreaming, a light that also functions as a humidifier, while emitting pink noise and aromatherapy.
But the Owlet is my favorite technology because it protects my baby. The peace of mind it offers is second to none.
I’m not sure when I’ll stop using a smart sock.
They have a bigger sock that kids can wear up to the age of five, although that seems old to watch out for.
It will be a sad day when I stop using the Owlet. The comfort this brings has been a huge benefit as I continue to navigate raising three young children.
And it gave me that precious commodity that every parent dreams of and few can get on a regular basis: sleep.
The technology I can’t live without
Welcome to The Tech I Can’t Live Without, Metro.co.uk’s new weekly series where readers share the bit of kit that has proven indispensable to them.
From gadgets to software, apps to websites, you’ll find all kinds of innovations that people really rely on. If you have a bit of tech you can’t live without, email Ross.McCafferty@metro.co.uk to be part of the series
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