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Mom Carrying Baby Around In Sling Didn't Realize He was Suffocating

In 2013, a woman gave birth to her first child. Excited, the new mother purchased a baby-wearing sling so that she could keep him close. She thought it would be the safest place possible for him. Sadly, she was wrong.

Marianne Matthews decided to go for a little walk with her four-week-old son. It was Christmas Eve, and little Eric was very fussy, so the mom popped him into a baby carrier and headed to a nearby store.

Marianne, a first-time mom, bought the sling online. They seemed to be all the rage in baby gear at the time, but the package came with no warnings and few instructions. She never imagined it could be dangerous for Eric.

“He started to get a bit hungry, and I tried to breastfeed him whilst carrying him. I then decided to go home. At the time I thought Eric was just falling asleep.”

It was only a 10-minute outing, but by the time she got home again, Matthews was horrified to realize something had gone terribly wrong. Eric had blood coming out of his nose and was unresponsive. "He had either choked or got into difficulties. By the time I got back, he had stopped breathing,” Matthews had explained.

Eric was rushed to the hospital, but he never regained consciousness. On New Year's Day, in his mother's arms, the baby died. The sling was deemed the cause, though the coroner added, “There is nothing to suggest that the use of the sling was inappropriate or incorrect.”

The parents are devastated at the event and hope that sharing their story will help others become more aware. "As a new parent, you get marketed at relentlessly with baby products. [...] The dangers of slings were not mentioned in the antenatal classes we attended, or in any of the baby books we read,” Matthews said.

Source: IJR
Photo: Flickr/ Paulo REna da Silva Santarem

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