With today’s knowledge about SIDS, it is safer to sleep young babies on their back and not on their tummy. For this reason, it is important for babies to feel snug and secure in another way to promote sleep.
Three misconceptions that you hear parents say about swaddling babies’ are:
- My baby doesn’t like his hands wrapped up tight
- My baby fights the wrap when I put him in it
- He is struggling to get free
Four benefits to swaddling babies the way this video shows are:
- The hands are wrapped and placed in a natural position (you will notice babies place their hands on their chest when you have them lying contented and unwrapped on their back).
- Wrap them securely before their nervous system is out of control and over loaded.
- Once they are asleep wrapping prevents the startle reflex waking them between sleep cycles; allowing for a longer more settled sleep.
- Loosely wrap legs and allow hips to naturally spread in ‘frog position’ to reduce the risk of developing Development Dysplasia of the Hip (DDH)’. The arms are the important part to keep firm and the legs are important to keep loose for normal hip development.
Swaddling babies to aid settled sleep is appropriate until they are 6-months old. There is more information about how to settle newborns to sleep and why older babies may not be sleeping and what to do in ‘Putting them to Sleep’ eBook or ‘mum, baby & toddler – together we learn’
The swaddling technique that is shown in this video is appropriate for the first 3-months after that you can leave arms free of the wrap which allows them to suck their fist or fingers to self settle.
Read more on how to mimic the womb environment for settled baby sleep.