If you must leave your baby for an extended period of time in a swing, experts recommend that it should be more than 45 minutes or an hour. While baby swings can soothe your colicky or fussy baby, there is no evidence that your baby gets to develop his/her motor skills on a swing.

Allowing your baby to stay for too much at a swing to the point of falling asleep in a swing increases the risk of SIDs. In fact, one study found babies sleeping in swings to be a major risk factor for SIDs.

If you plan to be away from your baby for a long period of time and think your baby may fall asleep, you can move your baby to a bassinet or crib.

I also recommend that you ensure that you get swings that meet all regulatory safety standards put out by CPSC. Pick those with a 5-point harness so they can hold your baby securely and avoid the risk of your baby tumbling or slumping forward and getting injured.

While my advisory is a max of 45 minutes to an hour as the period you can leave your baby in a swing, you should consider other factors before leaving your baby unattended. For example, if your baby is fussy or wants to climb out of the swing, you should calm him/her down first before considering leaving her for a long period by themselves. The risk is that your baby can climb out and get injured.

I also usually advise parents to keep an eye out for recalled baby products that are not safe. Don’t end up using an unsafe swing. You can check all recalls here.