Article: Swaddling Your Baby

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Swaddled babySwaddling Your Baby

Swaddling is a very traditional technique which is used to help newborns to adjust to life outside of the womb, and attempts to mirror baby's environment in utero by creating a slight pressure around their body to give them a sense of security and warmth. It should be done using a cotton sheet, cellular blanket, or a special swaddling wrap.

Not all babies enjoy being swaddled, but it can be an effective trigger for sleep, and research has suggested that swaddled babies sleep more deeply, and wake less frequently, and are less deisturbed by their own 'moro' or startle reflex. In addition, research has suggested that swaddling may help reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) in young babies.

If you cannot afford to buy a specific swaddling blanket, then the technique is fairly simple and gets easier the more you practise.

To swaddle your baby using a sheet or cellular blanket, spread it out flat, with one corner folded over slightly. Lay your baby face up on the sheet with his neck resting against the fold. Wrap the left corner of the sheet over his body and tuck it beneath him. Bring the bottom corner over his feet, and then wrap the right corner around him, leaving only his head and neck exposed.

Swaddling diagrams

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beware of overheating your baby, and avoid swaddling too tightly. Check that you can slip your fingers down the top of the sheet. You will also need to adjust your babies clothing according to the room temperature. Swaddling should only be continued for the first few weeks of a baby's life, and should be stopped if your baby starts kicking off the covers.


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