• Michelle Goudy

Everything You Need to Know About the Swaddle

A lot of newborns love to be swaddled - it keeps them nice and snug, just like the womb. But there is an art to swaddling and there will come a time where using a swaddle is no longer safe for your child.

Find the perfect swaddle: Some people do all kinds of research before deciding on swaddling and some people buy the first swaddle they see at Target. I'm here to tell you that's it's more important to swaddle correctly than to spend all kinds of time or money on the perfect swaddle. Some people prefer a swaddle blanket, some prefer a Velcro swaddle. There are swaddles that zip and swaddles that allow the baby to keep their arms above their head. You can even swaddle with your baby's arm out. It's all personal preference and what works for your family. Keep in mind that a swaddle is not a miracle. I tried 5 or 6 different swaddles hoping that just one would help my baby sleep through the night. No luck.

Swaddling your baby: Start with baby in only a diaper or a onesie. Parent's are often worried about baby being too cold, but the more common mistake is overdressing your baby. A good swaddle will be snug around the arms and loose at the hips. Start with baby's arms at their sides when you swaddle and see how your baby responds. If your baby manages to get their hands to their mouth every night, you may want to consider swaddling with their arms on their chest or arms outside of the swaddle.

Swaddle safety: Make sure your baby's hip are loose in the swaddle to prevent any hip issues. Keep the fabric away from your child's face. If you are using a blanket to swaddle, make sure there are no loose ends. Always put your baby to sleep on their back. This is extra important if you are swaddling. Once your baby starts to roll, it's time to wean from the swaddle.

Weaning from the swaddle: Weaning from the swaddle is not as scary as it sounds. Simply remove one arm from the swaddle for a few nights and then remove the second arm. You can continue to swaddle with the arms free or transition to pajamas. This is usually when people use the Merlin Magic Sleep Suit, Zipadee Zip suit Halo or other type of sleep suit. These are all great options. Just make sure that they are approved for a rolling baby.

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