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Our Founder and Leader

 

Newton Baby’s founder, Michael Rothbard, is a sleep industry veteran who is proud to share the best the company has to offer from their families to yours.

Michael Rothbard is a third-generation sleep entrepreneur with over thirty years of experience in the industry. As a founder and entrepreneur, he has devoted his career to the pursuit of all things beneficial to a good night’s sleep for the whole family. Newton Baby was born out of concern as a parent of three young children that existing baby sleep surfaces weren’t breathable enough to ensure adequate airflow. Upon learning about Wovenaire technology, Michael knew that a mattress comprised of this unique fabric would quell his concerns, and the “rest” is history.

 

 

Miss Megan & the Miss Megan Effect

 

Miss Megan is the founder of Conscious Proactive Parenting and Mantra Sleep Solutions, and is Newton Baby’s in-house expert on babies’ sleep. As a sleep coach with over a decade of experience under her belt, she focuses on proactive and positive discipline to encourage steady, restful sleep. Her mission is to make bedtime more like a dream than a nightmare for the sake of the entire family’s wellbeing. The “Miss Megan Effect” has proven effective for countless babies and children aged 12 weeks through 12 years. Newton Baby is proud to have her on board to share wisdom on best practices for healthy, happy sleep.


In addition to this mother-of-two’s extraordinary qualifications as an infant sleep expert, Miss Megan is a Montessori-trained directress, board-certified holistic health coach, and life coach.

Dr. Deena Blanchard, Pediatrician and Mom of 3

 

Dr. Deena Blanchard is a board-certified pediatrician and partner at Premier Pediatrics in New York City. Dr. Deena regularly contributes to leading parenting blogs including Big City Moms and Momtastic, and has also been featured on AOL, The Huffington Post, The Bump, CBS, CUNY-TV, and more for her skillful health and parenting tips.


Dr. Deena’s impressive resume includes a master’s of public health from Temple University, where she specialized in health education. Dr. Deena then attended medical school at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where she was awarded both Alpha Omega Alpha and the American Medical Women’s Association Glascow-Rubin Achievement Award. Her formal training concluded with a residency at Columbia University, where she served on the family advisory committee and was honored as Physician of the Year in 2007.


Dr. Deena earnestly supports Newton Baby’s products and initiatives that encourage safe, healthy sleep for babies, so much so that she proudly counts on Newton Baby for her little ones at home.

Newton Baby: The Science Behind the Safety

 

Newton Baby was created out of the founders’ mission to offer the safest, healthiest, and best sleep products for babies. As veterans of the sleep industry (and concerned parents themselves), they had a keen understanding of the market and where current offerings came up short. Thus, the “revolution-airy” Newton Crib Mattress was born.


The main component of the Newton Crib Mattress is Wovenaire, a material comprised of food-grade polymer and 90% air by volume. Its unique, first-of-its-kind composition allows for the highest level of airflow for babies to breathe easily and sleep soundly, thus giving parents the peace of mind they need for the only periods during which their little ones aren’t under continual surveillance.


Although experts recommend that babies sleep on their backs, rollovers inevitably occur. Traditional crib mattresses can pose a suffocation risk, and thus Newton Baby sought to create a safer sleep environment in the event of these particular instances.


Study #1: Suffocation Risk


To ensure that the product fulfilled its purpose and reached the highest possible standards, Newton Baby submitted a sample crib mattress to a multinational, CPSC-accredited inspection/product testing laboratory for review in 2015 to gauge the risk of infant suffocation. They used a mannequin with the weight and respiratory capabilities of a six-month-old baby, and introduced three competing crib mattresses in addition to the Newton as benchmarks.


The Newton Crib Mattress showed the lowest risk of suffocation, which was half of that of two competitors, while the third showed an unusually high risk of suffocation. (Suffocation potential took into account the pressure for normal airway flow resistance and elastic recoil of the lungs and chest when the mannequin was face down and breathing through each of the mattress samples.) Additionally, the Newton measured significantly below the limit for a surface to be potentially fatal on account of airway obstruction (15 cm H2O), with an average measure across 30 tests at 2.12 cm H2O. (It is worth noting that the normal rate of unhindered breathing for a newborn is 2.0 cm H2O.)



During the final assessment stages, the Newton Crib Mattress was compared to being “just like breathing” by the technicians at the lab analyzing the data. The findings were then shared with a leading neonatologist (doctor specializing in infant care), who is also an expert in infant breathing disorders. The doctor concurred that the Newton Crib Mattress posed a considerably low risk of suffocation.


Study #2: Carbon Dioxide Rebreathing


Another study was conducted in the same year by the same inspection/product testing laboratory to measure carbon dioxide rebreathing rates. Carbon dioxide rebreathing increases respiratory effort, and the rebreathing of exhaled air is considered to be one possible cause of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, commonly known as SIDS.


The researchers used a mannequin with a simulated respiratory system akin to that of a one-month-old baby, comparing its carbon dioxide rebreathing patterns on the Newton sample paired with a muslin cotton sheet along with that of a conventional waterproof mattress with a muslin cotton sheet; a long-haired sheepskin blanket; and a bean bag (mimicking a sinkable surface with waterproof lining).


The research showed that the Newton Crib Mattress significantly had the lowest amount of carbon dioxide retention, thus proving to be a “very benign” surface for a resting newborn. The bean bag proved to be the biggest hazard for carbon dioxide rebreathing, followed by the sheepskin blanket and then the non-Newton waterproof mattress.


The findings were then shared with the same expert neonatologist from the previous study. After reviewing the research, the doctor confirmed that the Newton Crib Mattress did not pose a significant hazard in terms of breathability for infants, while also noting that it posed a significantly lower risk of carbon dioxide rebreathing than a conventional crib mattress.


Study #3: Suffocation Risk for the Newton Crib Mattress Pad


In 2017, Newton Baby introduced its crib mattress pad to the market, and in the same year submitted a sample to the same inspection/product testing laboratory involved in the previous two studies. This time, a mannequin with a mechanical lung system akin to that of a one-year-old was used to gauge the risk of suffocation on the mattress pad, which was fitted over a Newton Crib Mattress sample.


The researchers conducted five trials with the mannequin face down, breathing through the mattress pad. Similar to the first study with the Newton Crib Mattress, the Newton Crib Mattress Pad showed a very low risk of suffocation. The Newton measured significantly below the limit for a surface to be potentially fatal on account of airway obstruction (15 cm H2O), measuring at 2.46 cm H2O, 2.05 cm H2O, 1.92 cm H2O, 2.42 cm H2O, and 1.87 cm H2O across the five trials.

Why Is Breathable Better?

 

Join the Mission: Keeping Babies Safe

This medallion appears on all of Newton Baby's products, certifying that Keeping Babies Safe recognizes and supports our brand's tested, proven, and—most importantly—safe sleep solutions for babies.

Newton Baby is a proud Charitable Sponsor of Keeping Babies Safe, a nonprofit organization whose prime mission is to advocate for safer children’s products and practices, thus leaving babies out of harm’s way from preventable circumstances.


Newton Baby’s contribution to KBS, in addition to those of other Charitable Sponsors, have allowed the organization to produce an educational video played on The Newborn Channel in thousands of medical facilities nationwide. Additionally, funds raised have allowed KBS to distribute useful guides to new parents upon discharge from the hospital.


Keeping Babies Safe was born out of tragedy by Co-Founder and President Joyce Davis, who lost her four-month old son, Garret, in 2000 due to complications spurred by a supplemental crib mattress that was marketed as safe. Through KBS, Joyce is determined to prevent this unspeakable heartbreak for other families by educating parents and the general public about safety standards for cribs, baby products, and sleep practices. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are 3,500 annual sleep-related deaths of babies per year in the United States alone. KBS is committed to significantly reducing that number with its numerous initiatives.


KBS is active on several fronts, including but not limited to the governmental level, where they helped facilitate the passage of federal crib safety regulations. Furthermore, the organization works with manufacturers, retailers, and the Consumer Product Safety Commission with the end goal of banning supplemental mattresses entirely from the market. On the charitable level, KBS donates safe, federally compliant cribs to families in need, believing that no family should have to compromise safety on account of financial hardship.


Keeping Babies Safe is a free, trusted resource for parents seeking reliable crib safety and product recall information, best practices for baby safety, and more. To join the mission, read more about Keeping Babies Safe or consider donating to the cause.

Newton Baby's Director of Customer Experience, Krystal, and Co-Founder, Chris, participating in a 5K benefiting Keeping Babies Safe.

The Key to Improving Nighttime Sleep (Other than a Quality Mattress)

By Carolynne Harvey, Certified Sleep Consultant & Founder of Dream Baby Sleep


If I had to choose one thing that I want you to take away from everything I have to teach about healthy sleep habits, it’s this: Make bedtime earlier.

There’s a pervasive misconception that keeping babies awake later at night will help them sleep later in the morning, and many parents fear that putting their babies down earlier at night means they’ll wake even earlier in the morning. However, based on the science of sleep, that’s simply not true.

All of our bodies produce a hormone called melatonin that naturally eases us to sleep. (I should mention here that I never advocate giving supplemental melatonin to children.) A child’s optimal bedtime is when levels of melatonin start to rise, which is usually between 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., based on their age and the quality of their daytime sleep.  When a baby or toddler doesn’t go to bed during this window of time, a chemical reaction occurs in which melatonin converts to the stress hormone cortisol. It’s like giving your baby a shot of espresso. She becomes wired, and trying to get her to fall asleep is an uphill battle.

A bedtime that’s too late sets the stage for three main problems:

1. Difficulty falling asleep because of the elevated cortisol levels.
2. Multiple night wakings—cortisol in makes it more difficult to stay asleep.
3. Early rising—sleep begets sleep; when bedtime is too late, they’re more likely to wake up earlier in the morning.

    Bedtime & Nap Chart

    Age

    Total hours of sleep per 24 hours

    Bedtime

    Tips

    Newborn

    15-18

    n/a

    Newborns typically sleep in cycles of 2 to 4 hours throughout the day and night.

    1-4 months

    14-16

    8:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m.

    Infants are still developing rapidly and feeding often at night. Bedtime is often late, but will inch earlier as you approach the 4- month mark.

    4-8 months

    14-15

    5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.

    Circadian rhythms are forming and a distinct 3-nap-per-day schedule develops. Naps should be at approximately 9 a.m., 12 p.m., and 3 p.m. If naps are short, bedtime needs to be on the earlier side of the range.

    8-10 months

    12-15

    5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m.

    The transition from 3 naps to 2 naps occurs during this time. On a 2-nap schedule, naps should be at around 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. To  make up for the lack of a third nap, lean on an earlier bedtime.

    10 to 15 months

    12-14

    5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

    Babies transition from 2 naps to 1 nap between 14-19 months old. During this time, rely on an earlier bedtime to help ease the transition.

    15 months to 4 years

    12-14

    5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

    Hold on to the nap for as long as you can, ideally up to age 4. When your toddler drops the nap, she’ll need 1 extra hour of sleep at night.


    For many parents—especially those whose babies are early risers—implementing an earlier bedtime can feel a bit terrifying at first. It may not seem logical that putting your baby to bed earlier could possibly help her sleep later, but I can’t encourage you enough to give it a try. Be consistent about sticking to an early bedtime, and give it some time. When you take into consideration the science behind sleep and the fact that sleep begets sleep, putting your baby to bed earlier can, and often does, make a world of difference in both the quality and quantity of their sleep. Timing truly is everything.

    About Dream Baby Sleep
    According to the National Sleep Foundation, full-term, healthy newborns should sleep a total of 14-17 hours per day. Typically, a baby should clock 8-12 hours of sleep at night, with intervals of waking for feedings, and accrue the remaining hours by way of naps throughout the day. Dream Baby Sleep recognizes the many challenges families of newborns face when it comes to achieving maximum sleep, and believes in creating customized plans to meet the very specific needs of each family.

    Founded by Carolynne Harvey, a mom who broke all the rules when her daughter was an infant, the company wants to educate and empower parents to take control of sleep in their homes.

    For more information, visit dreambabysleep.com.

    Cheat Sheet for Expectant First-Time Fathers

    Conduct a search of “ways to prepare for baby,” and it’s hardly a surprise that most info out there is aimed at moms-to-be. The reasons are as obvious as, well, a big, pregnant belly. But as Father’s Day just came and went on June 17, let’s spare a thought for how dads-to-be can get in fighting shape for the earthquake-level shift from regular dude to committed dad.

     

    So here you go, soon-to-be fathers: Here's our top eight things to think about, talk about, and do before your baby comes:

     

    1. Spend time alone with your partner. You probably already know that couple's time is going to shift pretty far down the list once the baby is here. Instead of bemoaning that fact, take advantage of the time you have now—not in a sad or wistful way, but deliberately. Be intentional about “storing up” some fun and romantic memories that you can savor later. Be romantic. What you do (go to the fanciest restaurant in town, binge-watch a TV series, take long walks) is less important than that you make the dedicated time to share.


    2. Hash out “who’ll do what” details. The thought here is to sidestep some typical resentments that can crop up between new parents by discussing those details beforehand, without making assumptions. Discuss whether your partner is planning to nurse exclusively or if you’ll be handling some bottle feedings. Agree on a “baby visitor” policy, so you’re not caught seething when you anticipated just-you-three when she’s readying the guest room for her mom. Talk about sleep (will you co-sleep with the baby? Are you sharing night soothing duties?), sex (yeah, no, not for a while at least, but you should still talk about it), housework, cooking, and all that good stuff.


    3. Read some parenting books. Catch up not just on books about fatherhood, though those can be a good bet. Browse the parenting shelf at the library or bookstore, and ask other dads for titles of the most enlightening or helpful books they read. Check out anything that makes you feel more competent and confident and less alone.


    4. Handle some practical tasks. Get busy and cook as many freezable meals as time allows. Deep-clean your home. Grab that baby-stuff list and go shopping, making sure (if a baby shower didn’t cover it) that you have enough supplies for the early weeks, such as small-size diapers, wipes, and enough onesies and crib sheets and burp clothes that you won’t need to do laundry every day. Be sure your bills are up to date, and set up auto-withdrawals for regular expenses if you haven’t already. If you’re taking time off from work—and we hope you are—get things in order there, preparing lists and instructions for whoever’s filling in for you. Oh, and put together all the baby furniture now, while you're still able to get some sleep at night.


    5. Talk to other dads. Think about the fathers you’re closest to. Whether that’s your own dad or brother or best friend, find one or two new or veteran dads you can count on to be really honest. Avoid the guys who’ll tell you it’s all horrible (no one needs negativity right now); you want a straight-up picture of the things you can expect to see, do, experience, and feel.


    6. Go to parenting and childbirth classes. If you were thinking for even a second that you didn’t need to attend these classes with your significant other, you were thinking wrong! Even if childbirth doesn’t go the way you prefer or imagine (or have seen in every sitcom ever), the various options and outcomes will be covered in a good childbirth class. Ask questions. Make lists. If your hospital or another outlet, such as a library or community center, offers parenting classes, sign up. Trust us, you can use all the how-to's and what-to-expect's you can get.


    7. Learn some new skills. Never held/changed/fed a newborn before? So you feel less all-thumbs, ask people you know—the coworker who just had a baby, the neighbor with the twins—if they’ll show you some basic skills: how to swaddle soothe a baby, how to heat up a bottle, how to fold and unfold your new stroller. Another good tip: Contact your hospital or local fire department and ask about the correct way to install an infant car seat in your car.


    8. Get ready to fall in love. Bonding isn’t always instant, but it does happen. If you’re worried you won’t go head over heels, stop. You will. See you next Father’s Day!

    5 Sleep-Friendly Foods for Pregnancy

    Pretty much everyone is ready for a nap after Thanksgiving dinner, but you can’t exactly baste a turkey every day. Expectant and new parents need more convenient ways to improve their diet for better sleep.

    We love how smoothies, like the ones from our friends at GreenBlender, combine easy prep, nutritious ingredients, and kid-friendly flavors and textures. (Ask your pediatrician about when to introduce ingredients like yogurt and nuts into your older baby’s diet.) The following ingredients not only blend well, but also offer nutrients that can lead to deeper sleep.

    1. Dairy

    A mug of warm milk is a classic bedtime beverage, and with good reason. Dairy contains tryptophan, an amino acid that helps your brain produce the sleep hormone melatonin. Dairy’s mild flavor and creamy texture can be a soothing way to relax.

    Milk and yogurt also famously contain calcium. Pregnant women need extra doses of this bone-strengthening mineral to build their baby’s skeleton without depleting Mom’s calcium stores.

    2. Berries

    There isn’t one perfect food or drink that helps you fall asleep, but certain healthy nutrition habits contribute toward better rest. In particular, some studies found that diets with higher fiber and lower sugar consumption could lead to deeper, more restful sleep.

    Enter berries! Raspberries and blackberries offer satisfying, sweet-tangy flavor while containing less sugar than many other fruits plus 8 grams of fiber per cup. Strawberries and blueberries are also great choices. Many berries are less acidic than other grocery store staples like citrus fruits. If you or your baby is prone to acid reflux, swapping your orange juice in the morning for strawberries may be a better way to add fruit to your breakfast.

    3. Bananas

    The cheery yellow fruit has tryptophan, too. What’s more, the potassium in bananas helps act against muscle cramps. Leg cramps are a common pregnancy complaint, so a snack that can combat aches and pains is a welcome treat.

    Bananas are a good source of dietary fiber, and they’re easy on the stomach. In a smoothie, they have the additional benefit of adding a creamier, thicker texture. Tip: Freeze ripe bananas in advance, and you can use less ice.

    4. Almonds

    Low levels of magnesium are linked with sleep disorders and difficulty relaxing. Experts recommend getting this mineral from your diet, because the superdoses you’re likely to find in a supplement can interact badly with certain medications or cause uncomfortable side effects.

    Not only are almonds a great source of magnesium, but they provide healthy fats, protein, and calcium.

    One bonus effect of eating almonds regularly is they may have a positive effect on your milk supply. Almonds are one of the top lactogenic foods, which are thought to help promote your body’s milk production. If raw almonds aren’t your jam, try a tablespoon or two of almond butter, or try almond milk instead of dairy milk.

    Want to get a magnesium boost, but you or your baby can’t eat nuts? Try spinach. The leafy green is loaded with magnesium and other vitamins. Baby spinach, with its milder flavor, may be virtually undetectable once it’s blended with your favorite fruits.

    5. Water

    You may not always think of water as part of your diet, but staying properly hydrated can have a huge impact on your health and sleep quality. Dehydration can lead to leg cramps, dry nasal passages (which can increase the chance of nosebleeds), and snoring, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

    During pregnancy, your blood volume increases by about 50%, not to mention the amniotic fluid that cushions and protects your developing baby. Staying hydrated with plenty of water and water-rich foods is essential for your overall health during pregnancy. Keep a water bottle nearby during the day, but scale back in the two hours before you go to bed so you’re not up as often to use the bathroom. Fixing a light snack before bed (maybe something with hydrating fruit in it) can keep your stomach from growling, without overwhelming your digestive system with a big meal.


    What you eat does a lot more than fill your stomach. Food can affect your energy, mood, and ability to get quality sleep. These tasty options can help you make great choices, from breakfast to bedtime snack.

    6 Self-Care Tips for New Moms

    Babies and children are selfish. No, that’s not mean... it’s just true. They are by nature and design needy, self-centered beings, and it falls to us—their parents—to fulfill those needs, which range from the 24/7 on-call nature of newborn care, to the quixotic and demanding nature of toddlers, to older children’s needs that may feel less physically taxing but no less emotionally demanding. Add home, work, a spouse or partner, friends, and family, and you can easily feel like every day is a pitched battle: you against the never-ending needs of someone or something else.


    So what do you do? If you’re like most moms, you kick it into gear and get it all done: the dirty diapers, the feedings, the midnight bouncing and soothing, the bad-dream-chasing, the dinner, the pediatrician appointments, the cat litter, the car inspection (is it late again?)—all that before you even go to work.


    Why We Skip Self-Care

    You have a list and you take care of everyone and everything on it, except you. What happened to self-care—exercise, time alone, time with friends, long showers, that stack of books on your nightstand, a night out?


    There are several intersecting reasons why many momsin particular new momsperpetually put themselves last and ignore or put off self-care, starting with the fact that it’s baked into the job description (see: babies are selfish, above).

    Then there’s the pressure we feel, or think we feel: Aren’t moms supposed to be utterly self-sacrificing? With just a few notable exceptions, all the moms you see on TV or in movies tend to be aw-shucks-kids-first, in-the-background types.


    There are other reasons we should acknowledge, too, like the fact that a lot of the time we’re too stuck on a hamster wheel of exhaustion to get off and take a look at what we need. It’s ironic: We’re so tired and busy that we forget to realize thatding!practicing good self-care may make us less exhausted and strung out to begin with, and better able to handle the busy.


    So if you’re ready to put yourself firstas the flight attendants warn you should when it comes to those oxygen maskson your own to-do list, here are some self-care ideas to try:


    1. Don’t skip physical care. While it’s important to address all those things that nurture your emotional, social, spiritual, and intellectual selves, you can’t easily do many of those things without caring for yourself physically first. Self-care starts with things like getting rest (as best you can, depending on your work schedule and your children’s ages), eating healthily, staying well hydrated, and finding ways to move your body in some way, every day. Put those needs first. Prep healthy lunches so you don’t end up mindlessly grazing on goldfish crackers; keep a water bottle with you at all times; lay down when your baby is napping; go for daily walks, either with your children if you’re home, or during lunch hours or breaks if you’re at work.

    2. Start small. An irony about most self-care advice is that it can soundparticularly to the overwhelmed new motherlike yet another thing she has to do. Don’t feel like you have to make some grand gesture for self-care that involves complicated babysitting arrangements or is otherwise too daunting to arrange that you feel even less cared for afterwards. Do little things. Leave a basket of laundry unfolded and instead cozy up on the couch with a book, or watch a half-hour comedy on Netflix. If 10 minutes of me-time is all you can manage, then take the 10. The trick is that you’ll begin to see the benefits of those short self-care breaks, with the result that you’ll further prioritize them.

    3. Forget what other people tell you to do—just do what you love. Old-school women’s magazines were notorious for telling women how to nurture themselves. They did so with a good heart, but still—not everyone loves bubble baths and scented candles. If you find getting a mani/pedi relaxing, do that. If you think other people digging at your cuticles is the ninth circle of hell, don’t do that. Find the self-care ritual that works for you, whether it's browsing a flea market solo, hiking a trail with a good friend, or arranging a movie-and-drinks evening with your posse of pals.

    4. Make dates with yourself. No, you’re not taking yourself out to that hot new sushi place. By “dates,” we mean actually schedule your self-care as appointments you won’t miss. You don’t have vague plans to take that new gym class with your friend; you have an obligation-by-calendar to do your level best to get there.

    5. Recruit a network. Networks work two ways in the pursuit of self-care. First, if you gather some like-minded friends in a similar situation, you can brainstorm things to do together as a group, like go to those Friday night free concerts in town this summer. Second, you can agree to swap babysitting with each other so that you each get to indulge in whatever me-time you prefer.

    6. Make your needs clear at home. It’s all well and good to suggest self-care, but what if your partner isn’t on board or available to help? Ask yourself if that’s really true. The thing is, with some exceptions, most partners or spouses would be happy to help you find some time to yourself if you’d just say, specifically, what it is you need. So speak up: Instead of screaming “I need time to myself!,” say, “I would like to stay in bed on Sunday mornings to catch up on reading the paper. It would be great if you took the kids to the park for an hour or two.”


    What kinds of self-care work best for you?

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