On September 23, The Boppy Company recalled all of its newborn cushions: Boppy Original Newborn Loungers, Boppy Preferred Newborn Loungers, and Pottery Barn Kids Boppy Newborn Loungers. About 3.3 million lounger pads were affected by the recall, plus another 35,000 in Canada.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), eight reported infant deaths were linked to these products between December 2015 and June 2020. The infants were put placed on the lounger on their side, back, or stomach. Later, they were found suffocated on their stomach or side.
"Infants can suffocate if they roll, move, or are placed on the lounger in a position that obstructs breathing, or roll off the lounger onto an external surface, such as an adult pillow or soft bedding that obstructs breathing," says a recall notice from the CSPC.
"These types of incidents are heartbreaking," said Robert S. Adler, acting chairman of the CPSC. "Loungers and pillow-like products are not safe for infant sleep, due to the risk of suffocation. Since we know that infants sleep so much of the time—even in products not intended for sleep—and since suffocation can happen so quickly, these Boppy lounger products are simply too risky to remain on the market."
This recall involves all Boppy Newborn Loungers, which were sold for $30 to $44 between January 2004 and September 2021. The products came in a variety of styles and colors. They measure 23 inches long by 22 inches wide and 7 inches high, says the CPSC press release.
The loungers were sold at juvenile product stores and mass merchandisers, including Target, Walmart, Amazon, and Pottery Barn Kids.
Do you own one of the recalled items? Stop using it immediately. The Boppy Company is giving consumers a refund; contact the company through their website or call 800-416-1355 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday.
"We are devastated to hear of these tragedies," said a spokesperson for Boppy, which is based in Golden, Colorado. "Boppy is committed to doing everything possible to safeguard babies, including communicating the safe use of our products to parents and caregivers, and educating the public about the importance of following all warnings and instructions and the risks associated with unsafe sleep practices for infants. The lounger was not marketed as an infant sleep product and includes warnings against unsupervised use."
Remember that infants should always be put to sleep on their backs "on a firm, flat surface in a crib, bassinet, or play yard," says the CPSC. Never place anything else in the sleeping space, including blankets, pillows, and stuffed animals. These safe sleep strategies can reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).