I was too worried about my baby to sleep – until I put a smart sock on him

‘116 beats per minute and 94% oxygen. Rory’s readings are normal. Phew.’

Not for the first time, my anxiety has been calmed by reading the app connected to my son’s foot. 

I thought, having already had two kids before, that I was in a good place and I would be calmer having a newborn again. Sadly, that wasn’t the case and my anxiety started to spiral.

It began in September 2020, when I became pregnant with my third child. 

This was my fifth pregnancy but my third baby. I was paranoid that something would go wrong again. 

Rory was conceived after an ectopic pregnancy and a miscarriage, so after he was born, I shifted into the mode of mama bear. 

He was a hard-won and much longed for rainbow baby and I wanted to protect him at all costs. 

Enter the Owlet, a smart sock that goes on your baby’s foot to monitor their oxygen levels and heart rate, as well as sleep patterns.

When the baby is asleep, you can sleep too, knowing that an alarm will go off if anything is wrong, because the sensor connects to an app on your phone.

Other people might be skeptical but I don’t care – I genuinely believe the Owlet has saved my son’s life.

A few times he has slept on his face and his oxygen has dipped below 74%. I’ve woken up to an alarm and have gone in to check on him, and flip him onto his back. I dread to think what might have happened if I hadn’t known. 

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It’s also helped build my confidence when it comes to co-sleeping with Rory. I know many parents worry that they may roll over onto their baby, or a duvet might cover their face (I remove blankets just to be sure that won’t happen), or that their baby might fall out of the bed. 

With the Owlet, I take peace of mind knowing that the alarm would alert me should anything like that occur. 

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 things had changed. When the worst has happened it’s harder to shrug things off. 

I was anxious and wanted to keep our precious rainbow baby safe.

While it helps with my safety concerns, Owlet also gives great insights that can aid sleep training.

The app shows you how long baby has slept and how deep the sleep was. It even lets you know how fast they fell asleep and how many times they woke up. 

This is helpful because you can change the length or times of their naps. 

Having had three kids in seven years, I know the value of a good night’s sleep. Now I’m aware it’s something I hadn’t had since my firstborn. 

Even when my other children were asleep, I would be unable to go rest myself, and would constantly check on them.  

My husband would never be without it now, and wishes we had bought it for our other children. 

I found out about the sock in one of those pregnancy packs midwives give mums – brochures full of pregnancy and labour tips and also a shopping guide. 

No one in my antenatal group had purchased one – but a few had heard of it and were thinking about buying. 

That is the good thing about knowing other parents – being able to trial and error things as a group and get instant reviews on products 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’ve used to help ease my worries and burdens. 

There’s the Elvie – a breast pump that you put in your bra – allowing you to walk around and get on with your day. 

I’m also testing out a new product called Glow Dreaming, a light that also works as a humidifier, while giving off pink noise and aromatherapy. 

But the Owlet is my favourite piece of tech because it keeps my baby safe. The peace of mind it offers is incomparable.

I’m not quite sure when I will stop using a smart sock. 

They have a larger sock that children are able to wear up to the age of five, although that does seem old to be monitoring. 

It will be a sad day when I stop using the Owlet. The reassurance it brings has been a huge benefit as I continue to navigate raising three young children.

And it has given me that precious commodity that all parents crave and few can get regularly: sleep. 

The Tech 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 proved indispensable for them.

From gadgets to software, apps to websites,  you’ll read about all manner of innovations that people truly rely on.If you have a bit of tech you can’t live without, email [email protected] to take part in the series

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