Wearable monitors can help track your baby's health

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Wearable fitness trackers aren't just for adults. Similar technology is now being used to track the health of babies. (KABC)

Wearable fitness trackers aren't just for adults. Similar technology is now being used to track the health of newborn babies.

"Being a new mom is awesome, exhausting and amazing at the same time," said Mara Castro, a mother.

Along with that excitement can come anxiety - wondering how your newborn is doing, especially when he or she is asleep.

That's why Castro uses a special wearable monitor to check on her baby.

"It measures the temperature in the room and also detects motion or sound," Castro explained.

It's just one of a new wave of wearable technology designed to track a newborn baby's health.

The Owlet baby sock helps monitor a baby's heart rate and oxygen levels.

The Sproutling ankle band tracks a baby's heart rate, temperature, motion and more.

A onesie from Mimo claims to monitor breathing and body position, among other things.

The devices alert your smartphone if something seems off.

However, experts say this type of constant monitoring can have positive and potentially negative effects.

"Some parents might find peace of mind while using these products, and they may find it helpful to have data that they can go back to when speaking to their pediatrician," said Dr. Barbara Pena, a pediatrician.

But on the other hand, it could cause needless anxiety.

"Some of the information that they receive, they might not know what to do with. Parents shouldn't be playing doctor," Pena said.

Plus, doctors point out that technology isn't fool proof. Pena recommends good old fashioned monitoring by parents themselves.

"If the baby does not look well, they should take them to their pediatrician or to the emergency department," Pena said.

Even with monitors, Castro says she also checks on her baby herself.

"I check on Jackson while he's sleeping probably about four or five times before I go to bed," she said.

That peace of mind helps make a happier mom and baby.

Keep in mind, these devices are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. If you're thinking about using one, you might want to check with your pediatrician first.
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healthhealthy livingbabychildren's healthwearable techtechnology
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