The nurses in the hospital often teach new parents how to swaddle a baby. A blanket wrapped cozily around your baby’s body can resemble the feeling of being in the mother’s womb and help soothe your newborn baby. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) swaddling can be an effective technique to help calm infants and promote sleep. Current AAP guidelines on swaddling can be found here
Back to Sleep
To reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) it’s important to place your baby to sleep on his or her back. Swaddling makes this even more important. The current scientific recommendation is that it is always best to place a baby on his or her back while sleeping. So whether baby is swaddled or not “back to sleep” is always the way to go.
When to Discontinue Swaddling
The current best advice given on when to stop swaddling comes from studies done in the Netherlands. In the Netherlands they have very low rates of SIDS. The recommendation is to never initiate swaddling after baby’s fourth month and to stop entirely with swaddling as soon as the child signals that he or she is trying to turn over. Swaddling should always be stopped before the sixth month since at this age babies will be able to roll over.
How to Swaddle a Baby
We love this visual guide at Baby Center if you’re looking for pictures to help you learn to swaddle properly. Follow along with these steps to learn how to swaddle your baby correctly.
- First spread the blanket out flat, with one corner folded down.
- Next lay the baby face-up on the blanket with his or her head above the folded corner.
- Thirdly straighten his or her left arm and then proceed to wrap the left corner of the blanket over his or her body.
- Tuck the blanket between his or her right arm and the right side of his or her body.
- Next tuck the right arm down and fold the right corner of the blanket over his or her body and under his or her left side.
- Fold or twist the bottom of the blanket loosely and tuck it under one side of the baby.
There you go. Now your baby is swaddled!
Best Blanket for Swaddling a Baby
Moms love these swaddle blankets from Ziggy Baby.
These swaddle blankets come in a 3 pack with different patterns and it are gender neutral. Having multiple blanket are great since baby’s are messy and you can always have one available while washing the others. Moms love these for their price, high quality material, and the convenience of the velcro.