Co-Founders Brianne Grant and Jenna Anderson Are Abate Parents’ Fears Over Their Child’s Well-Being
Written By: Tanya Sawhney
Photos Provided By: Chris Mekdara Paranoid Mama App
Paranoid Mama is a video-guided first aid app for parents and caregivers. It’s designed to give users easy step-by-step instructions to save their infant or toddler’s life in an emergency situation until help arrives. The Paranoid Mama app features videos on choking, CPR, seizures, deep cut management and more, providing users with easy-to-access—emergency information that is just a click away. We had a chat with Co-Founders Brianne Grant and Jenna Anderson on how the concept came about and how they hope the app will benefit parents. Paranoid Mama App
Q: How did you get your idea/concept for the business?
Brianne Grant: I have two little girls, and my first born, Kyla, has always been a gagger. I’m not sure if it’s a texture thing or what, but up until she was three she used to gag on even the smallest morsels. One day as this was happening, I was trying to remember how to do the Heimlich if necessary and was completely blanking. I had taken a Baby Safety class back when I was pregnant, but that was years ago and there had been so much going on at that time that I apparently didn’t retain much of it.
Jenna Anderson: I took that class, too, and even got CPR certified years ago, but in an emergency situation, I don’t think I’d remember what to do, or how to start the process, given the panicked state any parent would be in.
BG: Exactly! All I remember is that CPR and Heimlich techniques are different for an infant and toddler, which really throws a wrench into things! So here Kyla is gagging, I’m patting her back and trying to Google YouTube videos on “How to Help A Choking Child,” and not having much luck. Once Kyla recovered from the tiny piece of lettuce that was “tickling her throat,” I delved more into finding video-guided and concise life-saving information. There’s a lot of information out there… in fact way too many complex diagrams and training videos, but nothing clear and to-the-point, and nothing that wasn’t bogged down by ads and lengthy introductions.
JA: And that is crazy… In the moment of an emergency, you shouldn’t have to navigate through fine print directions or frantically browse YouTube videos. In fact, there should be an app that lets you visually follow along step-by-step while you aid your distressed child! And THAT is what led up to the Paranoid Mama App.
Q: What is the need that ‘Paranoid Mama‘ exists to satisfy?
JA: In an emergency situation, a time when all your worst fears are realized, you should have a go-to and reliable source for instructions that you can listen to or watch that guide you through what to do to help save your child’s life. The Paranoid Mama app very simply instructs users via video on how to provide first aid to an infant or toddler in an emergency situation. It’s an app designed to help you save your child’s life until help is able to arrive. The App features videos for Infant Choking, Toddler Choking, Infant CPR, Toddler CPR, Seizures, Deep Cuts/Makeshift Tourniquets and How to Use the AED Machine for Infants & Toddlers. While there are many medical issues and concerns out there for new parents and parents of active toddlers alike, these select accidents are the ones that, in the moment, depend on the parent or caregiver to take immediate action.
BG: And while calling 911 comes first and foremost, your child may not have time to wait for the medical professionals to arrive. When saving a life is in your hands, you need a dependable source you can count on to provide quick and to-the-point, first aid information. And equally important, it’s an offline app, which means that once it’s downloaded the videos are part of your phone and you don’t need to worry about having a strong signal, an internet connection or about the videos buffering while you’re in the midst of an emergency situation.
Q: What do you think you see parents worry about too much these days?
BG: As moms, it’s completely normal to have irrational fears as well as rational fears…. whether you call it mommy worries, panics or straight up parental paranoia, it’s normal. It comes with the job. And as children grow, new worries develop. It’s a natural, biological response. It’s not that parents worry too much, but who wants to spend unnecessary time worrying when solutions are out there to fix an issue or at least give peace of mind? For example, I used to have this reoccurring dream that my youngest daughter, Juliette, would figure out how to open her door and make her way to the top of the stairs unaccompanied—stairs that I didn’t yet have a baby gate secured. Despite the fact that she couldn’t even reach her doorknob yet, I kept waking up to the same scenario. So the next day I Amazon Primed (that’s a verb now, right?) over a baby gate (I mean, I’d be needing to get one shortly anyway), installed it and haven’t had that waking dream since.
JA: On our social media sites we actually try to make light of such scenarios. They are all too common, and many are quite comical. Example being, my purchase of a child leash (AKA the “threat leash”) after my daughter, Addison, ran away from me in Target. Yep, every bit as scary as it sounds. In developing a social media community around Paranoid Mama (and keeping the app strictly for the emergency situation videos), we’re able to share health and safety information, as well as discuss hazard-preventing products. We parents have to look out for one another because life with littles is full of crazy things that just happen despite our best efforts to protect them.
Q: Why the mobile application instead of a website?
BG: We would love to share these videos on Facebook and Instagram, but websites are subject to Wifi and loading/buffering issues and we don’t want to have parents rely on videos that may or may not freeze mid-step. The Paranoid Mama App is an offline app, which means that once it’s downloaded the videos are part of your phone and you don’t need to worry about having a strong signal or internet connection. What if you’re camping in the mountains, traveling through unfamiliar territory or somewhere remote without service… then what? What if even a 911 call might not go through? When little lives are in your hands, it’s better to be prepared.
Q: What is the USP of your business; why should customers select you over your competitors?
BG: Sure, there’s a ton of medical, first-aid information out there, but nothing like the Paranoid Mama App that gives you video-guided first-aid information just a click away. As far as other companies that provide similar information, the only real competitors are the CPR course providers. And, in fact, we don’t want you to choose our app over taking a CPR class. Taking a CPR class is the most effective way to help save your child’s life while waiting for medical help to arrive. We are huge advocates of these courses and would greatly recommend that every parent or caregiver become certified. We both are proudly certified. That being said, the Paranoid Mama App works wonderfully in tandem with such training. In the moment of an extreme situation, it’s completely normal to panic. Your adrenaline is raging, your heart hammering, mind racing, and having an easy button to help you re-focus your attention and guide you through the process is just what most people need. Plus trying to remember how to spell “Heimlich” correctly in a search bar in such a state… forget about it!
Q: Will the app have a cost associated with it?
JA: The app will be available to download through the app store for $4.99. There will be no in-app purchase nuisances and no ads ever so that it will remain true to its purpose: providing parents & caregivers with clear and easy to navigate first aid videos. You could think of it as peace of mind for less than a latte.
Q: How do you feel equipped to provide this app?
JA: We are well equipped and more than qualified. We both have backgrounds in digital development and advertising, and actually used to work together. We knew what we wanted to create and more importantly WHY, but we really owe credit to our catalog of doctors, nurses and paramedics whom we intensely interviewed and hounded for every detail of information. Our idea. Their expertise.
BG: And we are qualified… we are moms. We are part of mommy groups. We hear the worries, the shared paranoia, and the humorous happenings of life with littles. We see the reckless abandon and zero self-preservation skills that our children have. We see them bulldoze through child safety precautions and discover their collections of outlet covers. We know what chaos they are capable of. We are the sentries, bodyguards and healers. We are parents.
Q: Where do you think your growth will be this year?
BG: With the launch of this app, we hope to provide parents with a tool that will not just give them peace of mind, but also give them confidence in their abilities. We hope we can inspire parents with kids of all ages to attend a CPR course. And we hope that these parents will share this app with other caregivers within their inner circle or those in charge of watching Junior. It’s not just for parents, but for the babysitters, nannies, grandparents, aunts, uncles and basically anyone a parent would trust to feed their child grapes or hot dogs (i.e. top choking hazards!). It’s for little Olivia’s swim lesson instructor or baby Jackson’s daycare provider. It’s an app that we hope you’ll never actually need to use, but if you do, we hope it helps save a life.
JA: And, while the app will stay minimal with just the videos for the accidents that require immediate action from a caregiver, we plan to grow our social media community greatly this year. As previously mentioned we want to make it a place to share health and safety information as well as highlight hazard-preventing products; not to scare you, but to help prepare you… and maybe have a few laughs along the way! We look forward to hosting events throughout the year that will feature complimentary CPR classes, mommy group meet-ups, mom-prenuer marketplaces, and medical professional speakers. Follow us on Facebook or Instagram to stay in the loop!
Brianne Grant and Jenna Anderson Paranoid Mama App