Tips For Safe And Successful Swaddling




successful swaddling

New parents often learn how to swaddle their infant from the nurses in the hospital. A blanket wrapped snugly around your baby’s body can resemble a mother’s womb and help soothe them while they are sleeping! The American Academy of Pediatrics says this technique is effective at calming down new babies, which promotes restful slumber for both you as well as an extra layer between yourself and any possible infection or illness linked with not having proper hygiene practices before birth. 

Swaddling your infant at home is a great way to make sure they’re safe and sound. There are just some precautions you need to take before doing so, however- follow these guidelines closely or risk injury.

Baby’s sleep position

It’s important that you place your baby’s sleep position on the back, every time. This may be even more essential if he is swaddled as some studies have shown an increased risk for SIDS and accidental suffocation when babies are put down with their stomachs facing upwards or allowed too much room between them so they can move around while sleeping upright in a car seat etc., says Rachel Moon MD FAAP chairperson of The Task Force On SafeSleep recommendations made by The American Academy Of Pediatrics (AAP).

In Dr. Moon’s opinion, “swaddling” your baby is safe as long they are only placed on their back and monitored so that you don’t accidentally roll them over!

Swaddling: when to stop using it?

The evidence is clear: parents should stop swaddling their baby when they see signs that he or she might be trying to roll over. Babies often start practicing rolling at around 2 months of age, but there’s no link between this behavior and risk for SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).

Wearable blankets and sleep sacksInfants need a safe sleep space that is free of any loose bedding or soft objects to keep them warm. Wearing blankets, however, should stop once your baby starts rolling over because it may cause discomfort in their arms and chest area​s. You can use wearable fabric coverings such as bibs with long sleeves for infants who cannot yet turn themselves around unaided but these also have limits ​and eventually needs transitioning into conventional mattress protection. 

Swaddling Risks

Swaddling has risks associated with it such as reducing a baby’s ability to wake up and even causing death. However, some parents find that their infant sleeping habits are improved by being wrapped in fabric tightly enough so they do not move around too much while sleeping because this can lead them to decreased levels of arousal which could make infants more prone to SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).

What are the AAP’s safe sleep recommendations for infants and toddlers?

Make sure your baby is in a safe sleeping environment, and follow these sleep recommendations every time:

  • To ensure that your baby is sleeping well, place her on his/her back to sleep and monitor him carefully.
  • Make sure there aren’t any loose blankets in your baby’s crib. A swaddling cloth or other unwrapped fabric could cover their face and increase the risk of suffocation.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics says that products like wedges and positioners can’t reduce the risk of SIDS. They also recommend against using special mattresses or surfaces for sleeping because they haven’t been shown to work as claimed, according ​to their website.
  • The crib or bassinet is where you should put your baby to sleep. It’s the safest place for her and gives both motherhood an extra boost of confidence.
  • There are a number of reasons why swaddling could pose risks for your baby, such as increasing their chances to get too hot. If you notice sweating or rapid breathing from the wrapping then it might be time to take this into consideration.
  • You may want to consider using a pacifier for naps and bedtime.
  • Keep your child safe from smoke by keeping the crib in an area with no smoking.

Swaddling Babies

You may have heard the term “swaddling babies”, but what does it mean and why should you avoid doing this? 

Babies who are swaddled too tightly can develop a problem with their hips. Studies show that straightening out an infant’s legs leads to hip dislocation or dysplasia – abnormal formations where there is not enough space for hormones needed during development which causes crooked bones as they grow up.

Hip-healthy swaddling is the recommended way to prevent hip problems in newborns. This involves wrapping them using a tight but comfortable blanket that allows their legs to bend up and out, which helps avoid any future orthopedic issues down the line.

What is swaddling and what are the benefits of doing it correctly?

  • To swaddle, spread out the blanket so that one corner is folded down.
  • Place the baby face-up on a blanket with their head above an open folded corner.
  • Gently straighten her left arm, and wrap the corner of that blanket over your girlfriend’s body. Tuck it in between both arms so she can settle down to sleep more comfortably tonight.
  • Next, tuck the right arm down and fold a corner of the blanket over her body. Then slide that side up to cover you both like an exposed heater underneath your pillow.
  • Hold one side of the blanket in your hand, and gently twist or fold it so that there is an uneven edge on both sides. Gently tuck this under-side underneath the baby’s back for extra warmth.
  • Check that the blanket doesn’t restrict her movement. Dr.”You want to be able to get at least two or three fingers between baby’s chest and swaddle,” says Dr. Moon, so it is not too tight around their neck.
newborn baby sleeping

Swaddling for infants in child care settings

We all know how babies can be, they’re cute and cuddly but some things should not come between you and your little one. For example: if an infant is wrapped too tightly in blankets or swaddling clothes it could cause overheating due to increased heat from their body being trapped against a fabric barrier while they sleep; this may lead them to lethargy which increases risks for SIDS (sudden death syndrome). In addition, there are studies linking hip dysplasia with being lay flat – meaning no matter what position moms adopt during feeding time.

When should your baby enter a child care center? The American Academy of Family Practice says that infants need at least three months to graduate from swaddling and are more active after their first birthday. That’s why we recommend waiting until then; by then, they’ll be rolling over on all fours!

The guidelines, Caring for Our Children-National Health and Safety Performance Standards which are jointly published by the National Resource Center For Child Care And Early Education (NRC), the American Public Health Association(APHA)and pediatricians across America have banned swaddling as it is not necessary or recommended in child care settings. Some centers however continue to do so because they can implement more forceful recommendations against this practice instead of following confusing federal regulations on what’s allowed when caring for young babies.

“In a child care center, there can be multiple caregivers who have varying techniques when caring for an infant. This raises the concern that babies may not react well to being swaddled in their first few months of life,” said Dr. Glassy. “Studies show if your baby is usually unswaddled they will likely have trouble waking up after being wrapped up tightly by someone else – increasing risk factors such as SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome)”.

The advice for how to swaddle a baby changes with their age. Newborns can be comforted and satisfied by being wrapped in just the right way, but as they grow older it becomes more challenging – sometimes even risky – to keep them from rolling around during sleep time because of new learning experiences like figuring out where one’s feet go on top or bottom when not tucked underneath before falling asleep at home without any help available immediately nearby all day long.


The information on this site is not a substitute for medical care and advice from your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that he or she recommends based on individual facts, circumstances or personal preference you have as an adult who is now taking responsibility of caring for another life stage alongside their own childhoods!

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