Posts Tagged ‘swaddle’

Graduating from the Swaddle

Wednesday, September 21st, 2016

img_1699My oldest loved to be swaddled. He didn’t sleep a wink if just one limb was free. My middle son liked being swaddled for a while, but was able to sleep without it not particularly long after he was born. My youngest was adopted at three months old, so I don’t know what he preferred as a newborn, but as a three-month old he was perfectly fine sleeping muscle man/starfish style.

How do you know when you don’t need to swaddle your baby anymore? Well, it depends on the kid. You can get some clues though from your child by observing how she responds to coming out of a swaddle during a sleep period. If she startles and wakes up when an arm or leg gets free more often than not, chances are she’s not ready for life outside of the swaddle blanket.

Likewise, if he busts out and doesn’t bat an eyelash, it may be time to try putting your baby down without a swaddle. You can try and ease him in by just swaddling his arms first and leaving his legs free, or you can go cold turkey, whichever suits your situation.

So what do you do when your child seems like she is never going to grow out of the need for swaddling? With my oldest son, we were in this boat for a while. He was at the top of his growth curve and quickly grew out of every swaddling blanket we had, and then regular blankets too. With him, we finally had to cut the cord and force the issue, cold turkey. His personality is quite stubborn on most things, and swaddling was no exception. We had a rough couple naps, but he quickly got used to sleeping sans swaddle. I think between being extra tired from not sleeping well for those naps and getting a crash course in self-soothing, he became a free-sleeping champ in no time.

How old was your child when he was done with swaddling?

Meaghan Howard is a stay-at-home mom to three boys (and desperately hoping that they don’t burn the house down someday). She and her family are enjoying living an ex-pat life overseas.



Transitioning Out of the Swaddle

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

Transitioning from the SwaddleSome babies never seem to need, or want, to be swaddled. Some do, but outgrow the need easily in the first few months. Others, like my daughter, truly need to be swaddled to sleep for an extended length of time to help them sleep. We transitioned away from swaddling when my daughter was 6 to 7 months old. Let me tell you, I was so nervous! She wasn’t a good sleeper as is, and now I was taking away one of my best tools! Thankfully, there actually are a number of good options available to help you transition away from traditional swaddling.

First, make the change gradual. Continue with your typical swaddle routine and blanket or suit, but swaddle baby with one arm out. Give them some time to become accustomed to newfound mobility and the feeling of being able to move an arm as you lower them to the crib, while still providing them with that “hug” the swaddle gives. After a bit of time, move to leaving both arms out while still wrapping their torso. Some swaddle products on the market are particularly well suited for this process. If both of those steps goes well, try putting baby to bed swaddle free! That may be all it takes. At this point I would continue the night time routine you have established, but in the place of getting swaddled, place baby into a sleep sack or wearable blanket. These provide the security and warmth baby has become accustomed to without any of the safety issues of loose blankets in the crib.

For some babies, the swaddle may be necessary for getting to sleep, but not staying there. If you feel that the startle reflex wakes baby when you’re putting him down but that otherwise baby is fine once asleep, try wrapping your baby in a blanket before you rock/feed/lay baby down to sleep and removing it once they are comfortably lying on the mattress. Since loose blankets in the crib can potential increase the risk of SIDS, be sure to remove the blanket as soon as your child is asleep. This is only assistance in getting baby down to the mattress, essentially.

Finally, a third option for babies that seem to struggle with leaving the swaddle behind may be a sleep suit. The sleep suit isn’t a swaddle, but does take the place of any sort of blanket and offers enough resistance to muffle baby’s nighttime movements. The thick fabric creates the cozy, contained feeling that some babies need in order to sleep. This can be used to help move past a swaddle blanket or can be a great resource for parents of baby houdinis who regularly escape their swaddle. As with all swaddle products, this is for use only when baby sleeps soundly on his or her back and is not rolling over in the crib.

Any change in a sleep routine can be a daunting one. Hopefully these tips will help you and have you moving on to swaddle-free sleep in no time!

Kate Cunha is mom to a 3 year old little girl and lives in the Pacific NW.

25 Tips for soothing a fussy baby

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Most of the time breastfeeding and/or babywearing are powerfully effective tools to comfort a fussy baby.  As a nursing mom, I rely pretty heavily on the magical power of milk to soothe my baby. Although there are times when baby is fussy and for whatever reason nursing doesn’t provide adequate comfort. On that rare occasion, I might feel at a loss of what to do to help soothe my baby. In the moment, while baby is crying/fussing it is often hard to think clearly and react efficiently. That’s when a little cheat sheet of tips, such as the one below, comes in handy; a list of tried and true ideas that are typically effective for soothing a fussy baby.

Photo courtesy of Jazmin.V Photography

1. Go for a car ride

2. Take a walk (in stroller or baby carrier)

3. Bounce on an exercise ball with baby in wrap or in your lap

4. Babywear while vacuuming (my floors were super clean when my second was a newborn because this was his favorite activity)

5. Swaddle baby

6. Give baby Rescue Remedy

7. Give baby a massage

8. Give baby a bath

9. Change baby’s diaper and/or clothing (something may be causing discomfort)

10. Sing to baby

11. Put on loud music

12. Rock baby in a rocking chair

13. Call in reinforcements. Sometimes having someone else hold baby is helpful in changing baby’s mood

14. Change of scenery. Go somewhere…anywhere. Give baby new surroundings/stimulation to attend to.

15. Use aromatherapy such as a few spritz of lavender in the air or drops of lavender in a bath

16. Provide baby with skin to skin

17. Go into a dark room with white noise (we have a noisy bathroom fan that my middle son liked as a little baby. Sometimes I would sit in the dark bathroom with the fan running while holding him)

18. Tell a story. Sometimes just the gentle sound of your voice can be calming

19. Do leg exercises to release baby’s gas

20. Burp baby. (I remember one time my first son was extremely fussy for about 20 minutes and suddenly he let out a huge burp and then he was fine)

21. Change baby’s position. If they have been upright in your arms for a while, try laying them down on their back or tummy.

22. Provide visual stimulation in high contrast colors such as a blanket or toy to look at.

23. Change temperature of the room or add/remove layers of clothing

24. Go outside. A breathe of fresh air can be very healing

25. Take a few deep breathes and as much as possible keep yourself calm. Baby will react to your energy. If you are feeling anxious, baby will too. If you remain peaceful, that message will be sent to baby and can have a calming effect.

What tip(s) do you have to add to the list? Would love to hear your tried and true baby calming techniques!



Sunday Funday Giveaway: aden + anais Muslin Cozy Swaddling Wrap

Sunday, April 1st, 2012

Suddenly there seems to be many newborn babies in my life…which makes me incredibly HAPPY! I love their sift skin, sweet smell, and squishy cheeks. Okay truth be told I might have a slight case of newborn baby fever from seeing and holding these beautiful brand new babies. 🙂

I have especially enjoyed seeing pictures of these babies peacefully sleeping in a swaddled blanket. I think it brings me back to the early days as a first time mom when I would slowly and carefully swaddle my little baby boy. For some reason this simple task of swaddling my baby felt like such a grand expression of love and comfort.

Aden + anais Muslin Swaddling Wraps are perfect choice for swaddling a new baby. For starters they are made from a light weight fabric with an open weave which helps a baby’s body be able to regulate his/her temperature. They are also generously sized (measuring 47” x 47”) making it easy for parents to swaddles babies of all sizes. Additionally the more you wash an aden + anais wrap, the softer it becomes. They are also multi-functional and can be used for burp cloths, nursing and stroller covers, portable crib sheets, stroller and car seat liners, tummy time blankets, change table covers, and more.

Do you (or will you) have a new baby to swaddle in your life? If so then first of all a BIG congratulations is in order! And secondly be sure to enter this week’s giveaway for an aden + anais Muslin Cozy Swaddling Wrap. The cozy swaddling wrap is a double layer wrap, perfect for cooler evenings. I’m certain both you and baby would love an aden + anais Muslin Cozy Swaddling Wrap!