How to Swaddle a Baby
On This Page
- Benefits of Swaddling a Baby
- How to Swaddle a Baby
- Swaddle for Sleep
- When to Swaddle a Baby
- Is Swaddling Safe?
- When to Stop Swaddling
- An Easier Way to Swaddle
- Final Thoughts on Swaddling
Wrapping a baby in a little burrito-like swaddle may seem easy…but when you’re a bleary-eyed new parent facing a crying newborn at 2am, “easy” is not the word that comes to mind! What is easy? My DUDU swaddle method—and my award-winning Sleepea 5-Second Swaddle! Both make the seemingly difficult task of swaddling a baby simple to master. Here’s how to do it—plus, all the reasons why you should swaddle your little one.
What are the benefits of swaddling a baby?
Swaddling is similar to being carried in a sling or cuddled skin to skin, but swaddling’s big advantage is that it envelops your little one’s body with a soft caress that can soothe for hours when you can’t hold them in your arms. At the same time, swaddling…
Mimics the snug hug of the womb: This copycat womb-like feel offers your baby a sense of safety, security, and familiarity.
Prevents spiraling out of control: Before birth, your baby’s snug fit in the uterus kept their arms from spinning like a windmill and bonking them in the face. But without those soft walls stopping your little one’s flailing arms, small upsets can quickly escalate.
Provides a safe alternative to using loose blankets: Loose blankets and bedding should never be used in a baby’s sleep space, as they increase a baby’s chance of suffocation.
Allows babies to pay attention to soothing: Crying can set off a domino effect of upsets for babies, with each jerk and startle setting off another alarm. All those rapid-fire jolts cause such chaos that your infant may not even notice your attempts at comforting. But swaddling reduces those distractions and offers a reassuring embrace that says “It’s okay. I’m taking over now.”
Activate your baby’s calming reflex: Swaddling is the first S of the 5 S’s for calming babies, which reminds babies of the sensations of the womb. The 5 S’s (swaddling, shushing, swinging, sucking, and holding your baby in the side or stomach position) activate a baby’s innate calming reflex, a neurological response that develops deep in a baby’s brain months before they’re born. When the calming reflex is enabled, it’s like flipping off your baby’s internal switch for crying and flipping on their switch for sleep.
How to Swaddle Your Newborn: The DUDU Swaddle Method
The best swaddling method I’ve ever learned is an easy, four-step approach that a wonderful midwife once showed me. I call it the DUDU swaddle to help parents remember the steps: Down-Up-Down-Up.
Below you’ll find a step-by-step guide for swaddling your baby.
Step 1: The First D — DOWN: Place a light cotton blanket on your bed (again, a 47-inch by 47-inch square is best) and orient it like a diamond, with a point at the top. Fold that top point down so that it reaches near the center of the blanket.
Place your baby face-up on the swaddle blanket so that their neck sits right above the edge of the top fold.
Gently hold Baby’s right arm against their side and with your other hand grab the section of the swaddle blanket closest to their right shoulder. Then, pull the blanket snugly down and across Baby’s body and tuck it under the left side of their bum. (It will look like half of a V-neck sweater.) Next, grab the blanket beside Baby’s left shoulder. Tug it firmly—away from Baby’s body—to remove any slack.
This first DOWN is the key to successful swaddling! Do it snugly…or the whole swaddle can unravel!
Step 2: The First U — UP: Now, holding your baby’s left arm against their side, bring the point at the bottom of the swaddle blanket straight up and place it on Baby’s left shoulder. Next, tuck the blanket edge snugly around the left arm. Again, grab the blanket next to Baby’s shoulder and give it a nice pull, straight out—away from the body—to remove any slack. Be sure that the swaddle blanket is loose around Baby’s legs, but their arms are snug and straight. (Bent arms allow babies to wiggle out…and that makes them cry even more.)
Step 3: The Second D — DOWN: Grab hold of the part of the swaddle blanket next to Baby’s left shoulder and pull it down—just a smidge. The small flap should come down to your baby’s upper chest to form the other half of the V-neck. Lightly press that small flap against Baby’s breastbone, like you’re holding down a ribbon while making a bow. Don’t bring this fold all the way down to your baby’s feet! It should just be brought down to the chest.
Step 4: The Second U — UP: Hold the flap on Baby’s chest and grab the last free blanket corner and pull it straight out—away from your baby’s body—to remove any slack. Then, in one smooth motion, lift that corner up and straight across Baby’s forearms…like a belt. The blanket should be big enough so that this part goes all the way around the body. Then, pull it snug and tuck it into the front of the “belt.”
Remember, this last step is not straight up…it’s up and across. Baby’s arms will be held snug and straight, but their legs should be loose enough to bend at the knee and open at the hips.
Can I swaddle my baby with their arms up?
Even though your baby’s arms were bent during the last month or so of pregnancy, it’s recommended that you swaddle your newborn with their arms down and to their sides. Swaddling with bent arms allows Baby’s hands to wiggle out, making them cry more and making the swaddle very easy to unravel, which is dangerous. The exception: Preemies can be wrapped with bent arms…until they get close to their due date. (Learn more about caring for your preemie at home.)
Swaddling for Sleep
According to research and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), when done correctly, swaddling can be an effective technique to help calm infants and promote sleep, particularly for infants with colic and babies who hate sleeping on their back. That’s because swaddling activates a baby’s “off switch” for fussing and “on switch” for sleep. Plus, new babies have very little control over their arms, which means they can easily startle themselves awake with their flailing limbs and even whack themselves in the face, getting even more upset. Swaddling helps prevent that, ensuring calmer sleep. Finally, once swaddled, your baby can better pay attention to—and be soothed by—the other S’s, like white noise.
When should I swaddle my baby?
You can safely start swaddling your newborn from day one! Do it for naps and nighttime sleep—and if your baby is especially fussy outside of sleepytime and needs help calming down. But your baby should be mostly unswaddled during awake time, saving swaddling for sleep.
Should I swaddle before or after breastfeeding?
In general, I like to swaddle Baby first, if that’s possible. But every baby is different! Some babies get so cozy and sleepy when swaddled that they fall asleep while feeding and don’t get enough to eat. For others, swaddling after a feeding might agitate them so much that they struggle to fall asleep. So, the best answer is: You have to see what your baby does best with. (Learn breastfeeding tips for better sleep.)
Things to Know Before You Swaddle a Newborn
When you’re just learning to swaddle a baby, it’s best to practice when your little one is calm or already asleep. Also…
Get the right swaddle blanket. Swaddle blankets can easily be too big, too small, or too heavy, leading to dangerous unwrapping and/or overheating. The ideal swaddle blanket needs to be light and breathable, made of 100% organic cotton or muslin, and measuring roughly 47 inches by 47 inches.
Avoid weighted swaddles. The AAP urges parents not to use weighted swaddles or blankets, since they can place too much pressure on a little one’s chest and lungs.
Keep Baby’s hips loose. Swaddling babies’ legs too tightly can lead to hip dislocation or dysplasia, where a baby’s hip joints are not properly held in the socket. (Sleepea and SNOO Sack are both certified hip-safe by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute.)
Hug your baby first. The first step to calming a fussy baby is to give them a cozy hug. That’s exactly what swaddling does…and it’s the best way to begin before you lay your little one atop a swaddling blanket!
Know your baby may cry. Don’t be surprised—and don’t worry—if your bub’s cries escalate when you start swaddling. You are not hurting them! Your baby simply doesn’t yet realize that they’re only seconds away from happiness.
Practice swaddling your newborn.
Many parents say that the first time they tried swaddling their baby was a disaster! The baby struggled, they were sweating, the hospital nurse frowned. Swaddling a frantic baby feels…wrong, like you’re forcing your poor, sweet newborn to do something they hate! But I strongly encourage you not to give up. Swaddling a baby with snug wrapping is such a helpful tool for peaceful naps and restful nights. While safe swaddling may be tricky at first, especially if your baby is upset, it’s important to give yourself some grace. The first 10 or so times you practice swaddling, be sure to do it when your baby is calm or asleep—not when they’re fussy and thrashing. After that, swaddling will become as easy as changing a diaper.
Is swaddling safe for babies?
Yes, swaddling is safe for babies! Remember, swaddling your baby reminds them of being in the womb and it’s an effective way to calm infants and promote sleep. Just be sure to follow these safe swaddling rules:
Make sure your swaddle is secure! Choosing the right size swaddle blanket helps ensure a secure fit. A swaddle that can easily come loose is dangerous. Shoot for a swaddle blanket that’s about a 47-inch square.
Avoid overheating. Lightweight, breathable swaddles reduce the chance that your baby will become too hot while swaddled.
Allow hips to be flexed and open. A hip-safe swaddle means babies can sleep with their hips and legs open in a frog-like position, not straight like a cigar!
Lay your baby to sleep on their back. All babies, including swaddled babies, must be placed on their backs on a firm, flat, and empty surface to sleep.
Know when to stop swaddling. It’s very important to stop swaddling your baby once they show signs of rolling over. Of note: Babies who sleep in my SNOO Smart Sleeper can remain safely swaddled until they graduate to the crib.
Does swaddling cause SIDS?
No. When swaddling is done properly, it does not increase a baby’s chances of SIDS. The Journal of Pediatrics published the most comprehensive study of swaddling-related sleep deaths ever done in the U.S., reviewing eight years of all swaddle-related deaths reported to the federal Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Their conclusion: Reports of SIDS in swaddled infants are rare. While another well-publicized report seemingly linked swaddling to SIDS, it in fact showed that the risk of SIDS was much greater when babies were swaddled and placed on their sides or tummies. (Learn more about why side and stomach sleeping is dangerous.) In short, swaddling your baby and placing them to sleep on their back, on a flat, firm surface—like a crib or bassinet—free of loose soft bedding, is very safe.
Is it dangerous to swaddle a baby?
It is not dangerous to swaddle a baby if you place your baby on their back, follow all the safe-sleep rules, and stop swaddling when your little one can roll. (Again, rolling babies can safely sleep in SNOO until they graduate to the crib.) Think about it like this: New parents are often first taught to swaddle from the nurses in the hospital where the baby was born. Would they teach you to do something they thought was dangerous? Of course not!
When do I stop swaddling my baby?
Swaddling needs to stop once your baby can roll. That’s because a baby who can roll onto their tummy needs their hands free to help them return to their back. A swaddled baby may roll onto their stomach and then become stuck in that position, which is dangerous. The good news for SNOO babies? SNOO has a built-in swaddle that keeps babies on their backs, which means your little one can remain safely swaddled for up to 6 months. (Learn more about the right time to stop swaddling.)
Is there an easier way to swaddle a baby?
No time to DUDU? No worries! That’s why I created Sleepea, the award-winning 5-Second Swaddle, which takes all the guesswork out of swaddling your baby. Instead of folding a blanket, you simply place your little one inside the Sleepea sack, secure the inner arm bands and leg flap, zip up and—voila!—your sweet pea is securely swaddled each and every time. (Because Sleepea features organic cottons, your baby will remain cool and comfy all sleep long.) Unlike most baby swaddles, Sleepea allows for safe arms-out swaddling, making it the perfect transitional swaddle for babies who are almost ready to end their swaddling days. Learn more about Sleepea.
Final Thoughts on Swaddling
Swaddling is a fantastic tool to help babies feel comforted, safe, and sleeping well. Parents and caregivers simply need to learn how to do it properly…just as new parents need to learn how to correctly install car seats to avoid serious injury. Practice the DUDU swaddle method on a baby doll before your little one arrives and once your baby is on the scene, swaddle them when they’re calm or already snoozing. And I highly recommend taking the stress and guesswork out of swaddling and simply reaching for Sleepea. This way, you know that your baby is always getting a safe and snug swaddle. And don’t forget: Always place a sleeping baby—swaddled or not—on their back and in their own flat, firm, and bare sleep space.
More info on swaddling your baby:
- What to Do If Your Baby Breaks Out of the Swaddle
- SNOO: For a Safe Swaddle Every Time!
- Swaddling and Hip Dysplasia
- Four Ways Swaddling Helps Keep Babies Safe
About Dr. Harvey Karp
Dr. Harvey Karp, one of America’s most trusted pediatricians, is the founder of Happiest Baby and the inventor of the groundbreaking SNOO Smart Sleeper. After years of treating patients in Los Angeles, Dr. Karp vaulted to global prominence with the release of the bestselling Happiest Baby on the Block and Happiest Toddler on the Block. His celebrated books and videos have since become standard pediatric practice, translated into more than 20 languages and have helped millions of parents. Dr. Karp’s landmark methods, including the 5 S’s for soothing babies, guide parents to understand and nurture their children and relieve stressful issues, like new-parent exhaustion, infant crying, and toddler tantrums.
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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or
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How to Swaddle a Baby the Right Way (Photos & Videos)
Plus, learn why some babies shouldn’t be swaddled and what to do when it’s time to stop swaddling baby.
For a new mama, learning how to swaddle a baby can seem like some secret jujitsu that only nurses and midwives have mastered. I remember watching the nurses swaddle our first baby at the birth center and marveling at their skilled hands. And yet, when I tried to swaddle our son, he’d break free in a matter of minutes.
But soon my husband and I got the hang of it. And we learned two key things:
- There is a swaddle for every baby (blanket swaddle and swaddling clothes) and for every mama (who knew zippers could be involved?)
- With some helpful tips for swaddling success, you too can swaddle like a pro!
Three Ways to Swaddle a Baby
For a very long time I was under the impression there was only one way to swaddle a newborn. The diamond swaddle was the only technique I knew.
Luckily, for those of us who like to have options, there are three excellent swaddling techniques. Life is not the same every day, our time and patience for day-to-day operations of motherhood changes, and so can our swaddling techniques.
1. The diamond swaddle
- Lay a blanket down on a safe, flat place for baby in a diamond shape/position with the top-most corner folded down 4-6 inches for baby’s head.
- Lay baby down on their back in the center of the blanket with their neck on the folded corner.
- Pull the left side over and snugly tuck under baby, making sure to keep baby’s hips loose. Never pull their legs straight or force their joints, as this could cause hip dysplasia.
- Pull the bottom corner up and over baby’s left shoulder and then wrap the last corner all the way around baby. Tuck into the little blanket pocket you’ve created on their front.
How to Swaddle a Baby – the Diamond swaddle – Mama Natural
It’s okay if your baby swaddle doesn’t look picture-perfect the first time, or the second time, or even the third time. Take a breath, take your time, and keep trying. Your baby might be crying, and you’ll want to cry too, because you can’t get their little arms to stay in, but you will get it. Remember, many babies calm down once they feel that security in the swaddle.
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2. Square swaddle or quick swaddle
If the diamond swaddle isn’t for you, don’t worry, there are other ways.
- Lay a blanket down in a safe, flat place for baby in a square shape/position folding the top right corner down about 4-6 inches for baby’s head.
- Lay baby down on their back on the blanket with their neck at the top of the fold; baby will be diagonal across the blanket.
- Pull the right side over and snugly tuck under baby (always making sure they have frog legs/loose hips).
- Pull the left side over, and snugly tuck under baby.
- Tuck the bottom of the blanket behind baby and you’re good to go.
Similar to this illustration, except tucking the bottom of blanket behind your baby.
How to Swaddle a Baby – the Square swaddle – Mama Natural
3. Sleep sack swaddle
Looking for an even faster option? This method involves a special sleep sack swaddle, but once you’ve got one it’s super simple.
- Put baby in sleep sack like you would a onesie or footie pajamas
- Zip sleep sack
- Wrap and velcro
These steps will vary depending on which product you purchase and prefer. We will show you some of our favorites later on in this article. Whether you don’t have enough time or want the simplicity of not having to wrap baby “just so,” a sleep sack is a fine option.
How to Swaddle a Baby – the sleep sack swaddle – Mama Natural
Here are some of the best swaddling clothes:
- Aden + anais muslin swaddle plus is a light-weight 100% natural cotton muslin that’s great for diamond swaddling or the square swaddle. Lilbaby is similar to the Aden and Anais swaddle, but uses 100% organic cotton muslin and is less expensive.
- Woombie is cult classic, one-zip option that many parents swear by.
- The Miracle Blanket Swaddle is 100% cotton and gives parents control in wrapping up their baby without the headache of coordinating corners.
- This is an excellent and affordable velcro option, while Halo Sleepsack has a winter weight option for those living in colder climates.
- This Anna & Eve Swaddle Strap is only for baby’s arms and can be versatile for any weather. It doesn’t run the risk of impacting baby’s hips either, though it admittedly looks a little like a baby straight-jacket!
- As baby is transitioning out of swaddling, the Zipadee-Zip is a good option.
Why Do Babies Benefit From Swaddling?
Babies have a startle reflex (also known as a Moro reflex) which can wake them from an otherwise peaceful sleep. Keeping your baby’s arms bound in a swaddle can prevent this reflex from waking them up.
Swaddling also keeps your newborn warm and reminds him or her of the comforting confines of the womb (it’s a big adjustment moving out of a one bedroom apartment into a mansion). Swaddling can help with the transition to life outside of their mother.
Additionally, keeping tiny baby mittens over the razor-sharp fingernails babies are born with is not easy. Swaddling can keep them from scratching their beautiful tiny face.
All of these calming benefits can also prepare baby for sleep.
Does Swaddling Work for All Babies?
Some children will resist swaddling like the plague. At the same time, you want to try several different swaddles before giving up completely; but bottom line, some children will not be comforted by a swaddle—never force it to work.
It’s also important to note that a swaddle is not appropriate for:
- Co-sleeping babies, because they cannot move covers from their face or alert their parents when they are too close
- Babies who can roll over
- Babies at a higher risk of SIDS
- Babies in hot environments (especially homes without air conditioning), as baby could be dangerously overheated
If your baby does not like being swaddled, try the sleep sack option, as the tight restrained feeling might be what your baby is resisting. Never put baby to bed with loose bedding or blankets, as this is a suffocation risk.
It’s important to remember that swaddling is not recommended once baby can roll over, as the blanket begins to pose a risk for suffocation. Many parents stop swaddling baby after one month when she begins to hold her head up.
Swaddling will inhibit motor development beginning around two months. This is when the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents stop swaddling. When baby is more active during tummy time, that is a good indicator that they are outgrowing the swaddle.
What to Do When Baby Outgrows the Swaddle
When babies first outgrow the swaddle, somewhere between 2-3 months of age, the transition may be a bit challenging. Since baby is used to being snug as a bug, normal movement may wake them up at first and cause a bit of a sleep regression. Here are some things you can try:
Try a transition swaddle. My daughter went from waking herself up constantly to sleeping through the night again.
Slowly reducing swaddle
You could also try slowly transitioning baby out of the traditional swaddle over the course of a week or so. Start by leaving just one arm out of the swaddle. A few nights later, remove the other arm from the swaddle.
Remember, all babies develop at different rates. If your baby is still waking him/herself up multiple times per night, wait a week and try again.
Once baby has mastered sleeping with both arms out of the swaddle, they can sleep in their pajamas or in a wearable blanket like this one. Either way is perfectly fine, but some mamas and papas swear the wearable blanket helps their baby sleep. Do what works for you!
How to swaddle a baby correctly — Lifehacker
December 18, 2019
By doing this, you save the baby’s sleep. And that means your own.
Many consider swaddling a thing of the past. Why wrap a newborn in a sheet or blanket with such an abundance of beautiful baby clothes? The answer is simple: for the comfort of the baby and the peace of mind of the parents.
What are the advantages of swaddling a child
It is believed that a child, accustomed to the tightness and warmth of his mother’s belly, feels very uncomfortable in the big world. A diaper or blanket returns the newborn to his usual state, helping him to fall asleep.
In addition, in the first weeks of life, babies often wake themselves up in their sleep. This happens because of the Moro reflex, which is also called the startle reflex. In response to a sharp sound or movement (sometimes without obvious stimuli), the child shudders and spreads his arms, and then presses them to himself. And wakes up as a result. The problem can be solved if you lightly swaddle it. The reflex fades on its own between about 4 and 6 months.
How to swaddle your baby correctly
Consider the easiest and most convenient way to swaddle. If everything is done correctly, you will get a cozy cocoon, inside which the child will be able to move his arms and legs.
Illustration: Inspiring / Shutterstock
Take a 1m x 1m diaper and lay it out in a diamond shape on a flat surface. Suitable changing table, sofa or bed. Wrap the upper corner of the diaper down, under the back of the child — so that his head lies above the fold.
Illustration: Inspiring / Shutterstock
Place the left corner of the diaper under the baby’s right side. Alternatively, you can tuck the diaper under your armpit, leaving the handle on top.
Illustration: Inspiring / Shutterstock
Now pull the bottom corner up to cover the baby’s legs.
Illustration: Inspiring / Shutterstock
If the diaper is large, tuck the end under the exposed shoulder.
Illustration: Inspiring / Shutterstock
The final touch: cover the baby with the rest of the diaper and secure the corner under the back.
Just make sure you don’t overdo it and don’t wrap it too tight. Between the fabric and the baby’s breast, 2-3 of your fingers should pass freely.
Other ways to swaddle your baby
Closed or full swaddling
Suitable for restless newborns who often wake themselves up with their hands. Also, this swaddling is optimal for walks in cool weather.
@ViLine.tv / YouTube
The technology is similar to closed swaddling, only the baby’s arms remain free. This method is suitable for toddlers older than a month, if they no longer raise their fists in their sleep and rub their eyes with them.
@ViLine.tv / YouTube
Swaddling with free legs
Another easy way to swaddle babies over a month old who still keep waking themselves up with their hands. First, fold the diaper in half diagonally.
@VLOG of a young mother / YouTube
Swaddling with a cocoon or bag
If swaddling is absolutely not given to you, you can use a modern alternative — a cocoon diaper with Velcro. It is suitable for both newborns and older babies.
@VLOG of a young mother” / YouTube
How not to swaddle your baby
Before you start swaddling, consider what you absolutely cannot do.
- It is hard to swaddle a baby. Our grandmothers did not doubt the need to wrap a child in a piece of cloth like a soldier. “To keep the legs straight,” they explained. Modern medicine refutes this myth. Tight swaddling with straight legs can lead to dysplasia (underdevelopment) of the hip joints. It is non-fatal, but unpleasant and requires orthopedic treatment. With proper swaddling, the baby still has the ability to bend the legs.
- Overdo it with wrapping. It is important that the child does not overheat. Use a light, breathable muslin or cotton sheet. If the room is cool, you can take a warmer flannel fabric or pre-dress the little one in a bodysuit and panties.
- Cover the baby’s face with the edge of the diaper. Children need to breathe freely in their sleep.
- Place swaddled baby on stomach or side . This situation increases the risk of developing sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). This term refers to all cases when an apparently healthy baby dies from respiratory arrest before the age of one. It is because of the danger of SIDS that diapers should be discarded as soon as the child learns to roll over in it on his stomach, that is, by about 4-6 months.
The decision to swaddle or not is up to the parents. Proceed primarily from your convenience and the characteristics of your child, and not from the advice of a neighbor. If he is nervous, wakes up often and cries, try a diaper. And if the baby falls asleep so calmly, you can do without it.
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If everything is correct, the baby sleeps well: how to swaddle a baby
Types of swaddling
There are several types of swaddling: tight, loose and wide. In all cases, diapers should be chosen from natural fabrics.
Anna Alekseevna Pchelintseva, a pediatrician at the K+31 West clinic, told Gazeta.Ru about the pros and cons of different methods of swaddling.
• Firm . This is a traditional type of swaddling, which was used by our great-grandmothers.
The specialist speaks of this method as follows: “In this case, the diaper fits very tightly to the baby’s body, fixes the arms and legs in a stationary state, the baby is deprived of any movement. But this method is not physiological, it can interfere with the normal physical development of the newborn, and also increases the risk of respiratory and circulatory disorders.”
• Free . This method has two options: loose swaddling with arms and legs and free swaddling without hands.
Dr. Pchelintseva explains how loose swaddling differs from tight swaddling: “The baby still has the ability to move. Taking into account the fact that physiological hypertonicity is observed in children during the first months of life, it is recommended not to stretch the arms along the body, but to cross them on the chest. In the second option (without arms), only the legs are swaddled, the fixation is loose.
• Wide . This method is used in the pathology of the hip joint.
The pediatrician clarifies that with such swaddling, the baby’s legs are fixed in the “frog” position. To do this, it is necessary to put a small pillow or a roll of diapers between the legs, hands can not be fixed.
Swaddling a baby is not too difficult. A pediatrician at the K + 31 West clinic shared with young parents a brief instruction on the free type of swaddling.
Free swaddling technique with arms and legs . Lay the diaper on a flat, firm surface, tucking the top of the diaper slightly inwards. Place the baby on the diaper so that its upper edge is at the level of the lower part of the back of the head. We cross the arms on the chest. We take the left corner of the diaper and put it under the back of the baby. We fix it loosely so that the child has the opportunity to move. We do the same with the right corner of the diaper. We take the lower free corners of the diaper and put it on the baby’s legs. We take the right edge of the diaper and wind it back, then the left one and bend the corner — we fix the diaper. There must be enough space for the child to straighten his legs .
It is important to remember that under no circumstances should a child be left unattended on the changing table!
What are the advantages of swaddling
Supporters of swaddling point out several advantages of using diapers and undershirts made of natural fabrics.
Among them is the ability to maintain the optimal temperature for the child’s body, as the natural fabric cover creates a warm and cozy cocoon. In favor of swaddling, it is worth noting that it helps the newborn sleep better. The fact is that in the first months of life, babies are not able to control their movements, so they can move their arms and legs, which is why they wake up. Swaddling a baby does not allow him to make unnecessary movements.
In addition, for many parents, diapers and undershirts are also economical children’s clothing.
Swaddle a newborn baby or not? As Dr. Pchelintseva notes, this is the choice of parents. But sometimes there is a need for wide swaddling: it contributes to the normal formation of the hip joint.
Is it true that swaddling helps with hip dysplasia? Is wide swaddling really used for hip dysplasia?
Nikolay Petrovich Batsalenko, a pediatric traumatologist-orthopedist, candidate of medical sciences, a specialist of JSC «Medicine» (Academician Roitberg’s clinic), told Gazeta. Ru about this:
“With wide swaddling, the pressure of the femoral head on the acetabulum increases, thus stimulating the formation of ossification nuclei. This applies to the immaturity of the hip joint, which lies under the brand name of dysplasia. But dysplasia is still a separate diagnosis. Now various types of diapers are successfully replacing wide swaddling, because the baby’s legs are bred. Swaddling can be used as an additional measure, but this is quite an outdated method, few people use it.
Dr. Batsalenko emphasized that exactly the same effect can be obtained when using slings: “A woman wraps herself in a sling (a strip of fabric with which the baby is attached to the mother’s body) and threads the free end of the fabric through the rings. The child is placed in a fabric pocket formed on the mother’s chest. Such a model provides reliable fixation of the baby in a physiological position: horizontal or vertical. The effect of slings is almost the same: the head of the femur presses on the acetabulum, stimulating the formation of ossification nuclei. ”
Why swaddle a baby at night?
As mentioned above, involuntary movements of the baby’s arms and legs can wake him up during sleep.
Anna Alekseevna Pchelintseva, a pediatrician at the K+31 Zapad clinic, explains this feature from a scientific point of view: “The Moro reflex is a physiological reflex when, in response to irritation, the arms are moved to the sides and the hands are unclenched, after which the hands return to their original position. The reflex can occur during the falling asleep phase and will easily wake the child up.
Therefore, the baby’s tendency to move his arms and legs should not scare you — it’s natural. The way out is to swaddle a newborn baby at night.
Until what age should a baby be swaddled? The pediatrician answers that this reflex fades by 3-4 months , therefore, in the first months of life, it is preferable to use swaddling with arms and legs. But during wakefulness, the child should not be in a diaper or a vest with closed handles, otherwise he will not be able to explore the world with the help of touch.
How to swaddle a baby tightly?
As Anna Pchelintseva explains, too tight swaddling of a baby can lead to problems with children’s health: “Circulation and breathing may worsen, movement in the hip joint is limited, which can play a role in the development of dysplasia.”
How do you know if your baby is swaddled correctly?
• If the swaddle is too tight, the baby’s skin color may change and cause anxiety.
• If everything is correct, the child sleeps peacefully.
• If swaddling is too loose, the baby may become unswaddled.
At what age can you stop swaddling your baby?
Many parents are interested in: until what age should a child be swaddled?
The pediatrician at the K+31 West clinic answers that the duration of swaddling is individual. But in general up to 3 months it is preferable to use swaddling with arms and legs, and then, if necessary (if the child is woken up at night by the movements of the arms and legs), switch to a free type of swaddling without hands.