Plunket warns parents to avoid wrapping babies in polar fleece

A baby.
A baby. Photo credit: Getty

A Plunket manager is warning parents to stay away from wrapping babies in polar fleece, for fear they could overheat.

Plunket Nelson, Marlborough and West Coast service manager Kerry Hamilton says the synthetic fleece was increasing babies' chances of overheating, Stuff reports.

"Polar fleeces will heat a baby really well, but then they can't cool off," Ms Hamilton told Stuff.

The material is also highly flammable. Ms Hamilton says polar fleece is fine to be worn outside but for sleeping, parents should use the more breathable fabrics, like merino wool and cotton.

Natural materials can often be more expensive than the synthetics, but Plunket tries to offset that cost by selling merino blankets made by volunteers at a reduced cost.

"Quite often, the quality materials are dear. We see a lot of polar fleece products around. Sometimes the issue is knowledge but quite often it is affordability," Ms Hamilton sold Stuff.

As well as keeping an eye on the bedding, there are other things parents can do to ensure babies can regulate their temperature well.

Ms Hamilton advises to use an electric heater with a thermostat that can turn off when it hits a certain temperature to heat a room, and keep the cot away from windows to keep temperature even.