Swaddling babies is not a new thing, but there are many parents who believe that it is cruel to swaddle their children and firmly believe that the babies do not like it. As it may not seem natural to us as adults to have our arms firmly by our sides while we sleep, we tell ourselves that our children will not like it or that it is not good for them. We might even convince ourselves that it is harmful because it is not allowing a baby to exercise their arms. Nevertheless, there are many good reasons to swaddle a baby. Read on to find out what swaddling is as well as its benefits for baby and you:
What is Swaddling?
Swaddling a baby is the act of wrapping them up snuggly in a blanket with their arms by their side so that only their head can be seen. The entire body is held in the blanket. While it may seem strange to some, this is actually very comforting for a baby as it is said to make them feel as though they are still inside the womb, particularly so for newborns.
How to Swaddle
Many new parents struggle with swaddling their baby and say that there is no point as their child always ends up popping back out with arms free. However, when done correctly, a swaddled baby will be unable to free their arms and should therefore sleep comfortably. There is a technique to swaddling and once this has been mastered you will find it quick and easy to get baby ready for a comfortable sleep.
The first thing to do is to lay a blanket out on a flat surface, preferably a bed. Place the blanket on the bed in a diamond shape and fold the top half down so that you are left with an upside-down triangle. You can then place your baby on the blanket with their head just above the fold of the blanket and their feet above the point at the bottom.
Place baby’s right arm by their side and pull the righthand side of the blanket across their body. Tuck it underneath the left side of the body with their left arm free. You can now fold the bottom of the blanket up and either under the blanket you have taken from the righthand side or over the top of baby’s shoulder if it is long enough. You can now place baby’s left arm by their side and pull the left side of the blanket across and around their body, tucking it in behind them.
If you are still struggling to do this, you can try an easy-to-use baby wearable blanket from the swaddling experts at CozeeCoo. Their baby sleep garments help to keep babies comfortable while they sleep without being overly restrictive.
Benefits of Swaddling
Despite what you might think, most babies do like to be swaddled. Swaddling helps to minimize a baby’s startle reflex, which often wakes them from their sleep. Furthermore, because it mimics the coziness and comfort of the womb, it can make babies feel secure, prompting them to sleep for longer.
Swaddling is particularly beneficial for preterm babies. Studies have found that swaddling helps premature babies to feel less distressed while encouraging neuromuscular development.
When to Stop Swaddling
Swaddling is considered safe for babies when the technique is mastered correctly. Nonetheless, once your baby can roll, you should stop swaddling (which is usually around two months). If baby is rolling before this age though, it is best to stop swaddling at this time.