Are Baby Sensor Mats Worth It?

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If you are buying a present for new parents and have no idea what to buy them – get them a baby sensor mat. It is a product that will be of use – it will not end up on a pile with other gifts they will never use again.

Baby sensor mats are useful if you are looking for a way to calm down and make sure your baby is doing just fine in your absence. Baby sensor mats are recording babys’ breathing and movement and sound an alert if they cannot feel any of those anymore. However, you can do totally fine even without them.

Baby sensor mats are not a must if you are not separating from the baby at any time. They are only useful if you leave the baby in one room while you are doing something else in another room.

However, they can be beneficial to parents who tend to worry too much. For them, there are few tips on how to decide which type of baby sensor mat is the perfect one for you further in the text. 

What Is a Baby Sensor Mat?

A baby sensor mat is a device that can be purchased separately or together with a baby audio or video monitor. It comes in different forms and shapes, but its main role is to provide information about the baby’s movement and breathing.

The baby sensor mat is most commonly a separate product that can be used until the baby is around two years old. Baby sensor mats that come as a part of a monitoring device can usually be detached, and you can continue to use the monitor without any worries. 

Some baby sensor mats are supposed to be put under the baby, while others can be mounted to the diaper, for example. Either way, they are sending signals about the baby’s behavior.

Baby sensor mats are advertised as products that are supposed to alert you that there is something wrong with the baby so you can act quickly. They sound a loud alarm if the baby stops moving or breathing.

They are supposed to provide the parent with peace since many parents fear the most of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). However, all baby sensor mats can give you peace – and nothing else. 

It has not been proven that they can prevent SIDS in any way, but sometimes even knowing that everything is okay with the baby can relieve the parents from worrying too much.

Baby sensor mats have built-in sensors which record the baby’s activities and create a pattern. Once they feel the baby is too calm or don’t sense it breathing, the alarm will alert them. 

Some more advanced baby sensor mats also can record the baby’s heart rate and oxygen saturation. This information is usually displayed in the parent’s unit. This type of device is also able to collect data and create a pattern of a baby’s behavior over time.

When a baby’s heartbeat becomes unusually slow, or when the oxygen saturation drops below a certain point, the alarm will go off, alerting the parents that something is wrong with the baby. 

What Are the Benefits of Using a Baby Sensor Mat?

Using a baby sensor mat will not do any harm to the baby, but only the parents will benefit from it. There have been some studies going on, but it was not proven that baby sensor mats could help in a baby’s development in any possible way.

Baby sensor mats are only informing the parents that everything is okay with the baby and alert if they feel something is wrong. The device itself cannot prevent anything from happening to the baby – it can only recognize what is happening and alert the parents. 

However, some parents find this satisfying enough and decide to use the mat anyways. Baby sensor mats cannot harm the baby – they are just placed there to monitor their behavior.

As already explained, some of the baby sensor mats on the market can record a baby’s heartbeat and oxygen saturation level and store that data (usually in a smartphone app). This data can be very useful if something is wrong with the baby at some point.

The parent can use the data to show it to the doctor to analyze the baby’s behavior in the past period, so they can figure out when something went wrong with the baby’s health. 

Are Baby Sensor Mats Expensive?

Deciding on which type of baby sensor mat to buy can be almost mission impossible because there are too many options available. More or less, every one of them will do their purpose; the only difference, in the end, is the price. 

In general, both the cheapest and the most expensive baby sensor mat will do the same work in the end – they will provide data about the baby’s wellbeing. However, there are several things you should take into consideration before making a final decision. 

One thing to look for carefully is the quality of the sound of the alarm on the sensor mat. Some of the units (usually the more affordable ones) come in the form of a one-device product. This means that there is no secondary, parent unit, or there is no option to make your smartphone the second unit.

These types of devices have a built-in alarm that will activate in case something is wrong. This alarm can sometimes be triggered by mistake, and the sound of a loud alarm may disturb the baby for no reason. 

On the other hand, some of the sensor mats have too quiet alarms, so you may not hear them when they sound. This is why you should test the alarm sound before you buy the device. 

Most devices with two units have the alarm option on the parent units. This way they will not disturb the baby if there are any false signals sent to the second unit, since only the parent unit will sound the alarm, while the baby’s unit will remain silent. 

Sometimes the two units may not be the best idea, since most of them require Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection with your smartphone in order to work. This type of connection can be blocked or interfered with by various objects that can be found between the two units. 

The best thing you can do is to estimate whether you need a long-range device, or you will be able to hear the alarm if you are in another room.

Also, some of the sensor mats come with devices that need to be attached to the baby in order to work. These types of devices can be uncomfortable for the baby, and that is why some parents prefer to use traditional pads. 

Here you also need to be careful because some of those mats or pads need to be placed on a solid surface in order to work properly. Baby mattresses can sometimes be too soft for this type of device, so make sure that you check that as well before you buy it. 

Down below, you will find several most popular baby sensor mats compared in more detail, so it makes it easier for you to choose the right one.

BabysenseSnuzaSense UAngelcareOwletLevanaMonBaby
Parent unitnonoYes (in a form of a smartphone)Yes (dedicated device)Yes (in a form of a smartphone)noYes (in a form of a smartphone)
Battery lifeshortshortoptimaloptimaloptimaloptimaloptimal
Alarm soundCan disturb the babyCan disturb the babyDoesn’t disturb the babyDoesn’t disturb the babyDoesn’t disturb the babyCan disturb the babyDoesn’t disturb the baby
Number of sensor padstwooneoneoneoneoneone
Smartphone connectionnonoYes (required)noYes (required)noYes (required)
Extra featuresLess EMFHeart rate and oxygen levelsPortable
Price (on Amazon)$129.99$90.00$109.99$123.99$299.00$119.99$89.99

How to Save Money on Baby Sensor Mats?

As seen in the previous table, baby sensor mats can be quite a big expense for the family budget. One way to save money on a baby sensor mat is to borrow one from a close family member or a friend who has recently had a baby.

This type of product cannot wear out. That is why it easy to inherit it and then further forward it to another baby. Broken or damaged baby sensor mats are not supposed to and cannot be repaired, so you don’t have to worry if the product you are getting is still going to work like a new one.

If you don’t have anyone with a newborn, then you should definitely go and check second-hand stores or ads – someone might be selling a good quality sensor mat for a reasonable price. 

If nothing from the aforementioned is an option and you are still on a tight budget, then the advice is to go for a simpler product. Usually, cheaper baby sensor mats are very simple, with one device with a built-in alarm that goes with the baby.

This type of sensor mat is very affordable and can be used for a long time if you disregard any flaws they may have (loud alarms, higher rate of false alarms than more advanced models, etc.)

Are Baby Sensor Mats Worth It?

Baby sensor mats can be a good investment if you are very nervous by nature. If they relieve you from too much worrying and from being overprotective, you should definitely buy one.

If you are thinking to buy one just because you think it is a necessity, then don’t waste your money and invest it in something better and more useful for you or the baby.

Baby sensor mats are just phycological things – they will keep you convinced that everything is okay with the baby in your absence and will help you go with your regular activities. 

The same purpose is regular audio or video monitor can give you as well. However, bear in mind that a sensor mat cannot replace or reduce the time you are spending with the baby. After all, the baby requires your presence and your supervision. 

Also, if you don’t separate from your baby at all, there is no point in getting a baby sensor mat and spending money on it since you can monitor its activities on your own.