Moms Let Babies Nap Outside in Sub-Zero Temperatures -- Because It's Good for Them

baby in strollerAfter hearing about Nordic moms who place their babies outside in sub-zero temperatures to nap -- I couldn't help but want to reach for a sweater or blanket. I mean, the idea of putting your baby in his stroller and then wheeling it onto your patio, balcony, or outside of the coffee shop where you're enjoying a beverage break when it's absolutely freezing outside (-5°C) just seems so nuts and inhumane -- but believe it or not, it's the norm for moms in Sweden.

Sure, the babies are bundled up well and all, but still -- they're napping outside instead of being all snug and cozy in their cribs, which really seems downright strange.

But then I heard their explanation for putting their little ones outside to nap, and it actually makes quite a bit of sense.


Their theory is pretty simple -- babies who are exposed to fresh air are less likely to get sick, because they aren't cooped up inside with a bunch of other kids.

Huh. They definitely have a point. If you've so much as set foot inside a day care or school during cold and flu season, you know what a cesspool those places can be. Somehow I'm guessing babies encounter a lot less germs when they take their naps outside instead of being inside breathing in other people's sneezes.

But still -- think about it for a second. Can you honestly imagine leaving your baby's stroller outside in frigid temperatures for an hour or two at a time? Even if you bundled up the baby really well, don't you think you'd feel so guilty about leaving him out in the cold?

I know I would. Heck, a few weeks ago, temperatures got down into the teens, and I made my little guy wear snow pants at the bus stop -- and that was only for about five minutes or so. I certainly wouldn't stick him outside in a stroller for that long, let alone hours at a time!

Of course, I guess it's all in what you're used to. (Translation -- I'm not judging Swedish moms for letting their babies nap outside. I'm only saying I wouldn't do it.)

And I'm sure there are plenty of things American moms do with our babies that moms from other countries can't conceive of doing too. Most of these moms were probably also placed outside to nap when they were babies, so it's only natural that they would parent their children the same way.

Doesn't every culture do what they're used to?

To each his own, I guess. But if I ever have another baby, he's napping inside. Or at least not in the winter time. (Spring and summer are another story.)

Would you ever put your baby outside to nap?


Image via Daquella manera/Flickr

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