“Is that the baby?” you wonder, sitting up in bed. You’re not sure, so you tiptoe across the floor, hoping that it won’t creak, until you reach your baby’s room. You peek into the room and see that your baby has only rolled over, but is still sleeping peacefully.
Any new parent will attest that it’s easy to become worried about your newborn, even while they’re sleeping! The worst part is that often the slight noises that you make to open up the nursery door can disturb your baby and you unintentionally wake them.
Fortunately, baby monitors are a great way to get around this problem. With the right baby monitor, you can watch and/or listen to your baby from afar without disturbing them if they’re sleeping.
So, which baby monitor is the best? There are tons of features on today’s baby monitors. Here are the 7 essential aspects that you need to consider in a quality baby monitor:
1. DECT vs. Radio Frequency vs. Wireless Network
First, consider what basic system you want your baby monitor to run on. There are three basic options you must choose from:
- DECT: Standing for Digital Enhanced Cordless Technology, this system is encrypted. That means that your neighbors or others nearby won’t be able to find the signal and hear what’s going on in your home. This system also offers the clearest sound of all of the options.
- Radio Frequency: Many baby monitors run on a frequency band such as the 2.4 GHZ, which is also used for other devices such as cordless phones, Bluetooth devices, and more. Sometimes this means you’ll run into interference and not get the clearest sound quality. If you decide to go for this option, make sure there are a few frequencies to choose from so that you can find a clear channel.
- Wireless Network: Would you love to just use your phone as part of your baby monitor system? If so, look for a wireless network operating system. This type of baby monitor connects to your wireless network and allows you to access the audio and visuals from your phone, tablet, or computer.
Each of these systems can be a great option, depending on your priorities and preferences. As you explore baby monitors, make sure you notice which system each one uses before making your final decision.
All baby monitor systems offer audio, but not all of them include video technology. If it’s in your budget, definitely consider opting for a baby monitor that includes video. There’s nothing like the peace of mind you’ll get from being able to take a quick peek at your baby without disturbing them.
When you have an infant, you’ll want to check the position of your baby in the crib occasionally. The video feature can also help you determine if your baby is just crying out a little in their sleep, or if they’ve woken up completely. Many a seasoned parent will be able to tell you of times they woke up their baby by going to get them too soon. It’s normal for infants to make noise and cry for a moment and then continue sleeping. The video stream can help you make the distinction.
3. Night Vision
While you might turn a night light on at night in your baby’s nursery, the lighting will still be dim. If you opt for a video baby monitor, choose one that has night vision. This means that the camera will still offer a clear picture, even in dim lighting.
4. Additional Cameras
You’re in the kitchen and the baby’s in the living room, busily playing with some blocks. If you go check on her in the living room, she’ll see you and demand to be held. So, you kick yourself because you didn’t bring the camera down from the baby’s nursery. That way, you could make sure she was safe even as you chopped vegetables for lunch.
This is just one of many situations when having multiple cameras can help. If you can imagine yourself needing an additional camera or two, choose a baby monitor that includes them. That way, you can avoid wrangling cameras all over the house and simply leave them set up where you need them.
5. Light Notifications
Most baby monitors, whether audio, visual, or both, include light notifications. What does that mean? Essentially, it means that lights will blink on the monitor when your baby’s crying. That way, even if you’re in a noisy room or you have the sound turned off on your receiver, you’ll know when baby’s making noise.
6. Temperature Sensor
Worried about ensuring your baby’s nursery is the right temperature? Some baby monitors also track this. Many home’s thermostats don’t measure the temperature in each room of the house, meaning that when doors are closed, temperature can vary a lot between spaces in the home. So, a baby monitor can be a handy way to keep tabs on the temperature and adjust as necessary. For reference, the best temperature for baby’s nursery is between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit.
7. Rechargeable vs. Batteries
Finally, there is one practical aspect you should also keep in mind: how your baby monitor is powered. Some baby monitor cameras can be plugged in. Other monitors have docks that recharge the receiver and monitor. Finally, some monitors use batteries. If you choose a battery powered model, check reviews carefully to make sure that batteries don’t get worn down really quickly, as this is a common problem.
With these 7 essentials on your checklist, you can make sure you shop for the baby monitor that meets all of your needs. Take your time when shopping and ask questions to make sure you know exactly what you’ll be getting. A quality baby monitor can make life for you as a parent much easier and also give you peace of mind knowing that you’ll know right away when your baby wakes up.
We wish you the best of luck with your baby monitor shopping!