Around 1 in 5 newborns in the UK are swaddled in their first few weeks of life, and swaddling has been practiced in various ways all across the world since 4000 BC. Although some parents claim it soothes their infant to sleep and lessens stress, there are concerns to be aware of. A good baby sleep routine includes regular naps. Let’s discuss should you swaddle for naps or not.
What Does Swaddling Mean?
Swaddling is the process of gently encircling a newborn in a soft, permeable blanket to promote relaxation when baby fall asleep. To reduce the possibility of asphyxia, gently encircle just the torso around an individual’s body, avoiding the neck or head. The theory behind swaddling is that it will make your baby feel safe and comfortable, exactly as in your womb.
Sleep cues can be difficult to learn for some babies, and swaddling can help them ease into the transition from wakefulness to sleep. The daytime naps of many babies, in particular those who suffer from colic, can be significantly improved by swaddling.
Read More: How Many Swaddles Do I Need?
Should You Swaddle For Naps?
Numerous pediatricians and parents advocate swaddling for a daytime baby nap. Swaddling has been shown to reduce babies’ startle reflexes, decrease baby cries, and even support better nighttime sleep.
The effects of swaddling don’t last long past the newborn stage, so it’s likely best not to use it after 6 months when your baby has learned to roll over. Baby wakes during a swaddle nap can be much more difficult to calm down, so it’s best if you do not use swaddling for longer naps.
At night, discontinue using swaddles by 8 weeks since they can be a potential hazard if your babies tend to roll over while sleeping or becomes entangled in the fabric. Don’t place any blankets or pillows near your baby while they are being swaddled either- these increase their risk of suffocation or SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome).
Read More: What Should A Baby Wear Under A Sleep Sack?
What Advantages Does Swaddling Your Child Offer?
Your baby’s startle reflex won’t be as disruptive if she is bundled snugly. You may have observed that while your infant is asleep, her body jerks. These involuntary twitches are completely normal and can be attributed to her startle reflex.
According to experts, swaddling can help infants recreate the same sense of safety they felt while in the womb. When she had less room to roam around. Feeling “held” and cozy might help to relax and comfort her, thus swaddling your baby may also help her scream less frequently.
1. Recreates Womb
For your new baby, the transition from womb to world is not easy. Babies are thrown into a cold and bright world after growing up in a warm and loving home. Swaddling simulates the safe and comforting environment of the womb, making the transition smoother.
2. Imitates Parent’s Calming Touch
Touch has been shown to have neurological benefits; it causes the human brain to produce a self-soothing reaction, stabilizes our heart rate and blood pressure, and reduces cortisol levels. Touch, in turn, is essential for proper newborn development.
3. Reduces Moro Reflex
One advantage of swaddling a newborn is that it helps to reduce the effects of the Moro reaction. The Moro reflex, also known as the startle reflex, is a natural neurological response that causes a baby to feel as if they are falling. Babies go through this all the time throughout their first 3 to 4 months of life.
While the Moro reaction is a sign of a healthy infant, its consequences might disrupt your baby’s sleep. They have involuntary movements as a result of the startle reflex, which can quickly wake them awake. Swaddling helps to avoid those uncontrollable movements, allowing for a more peaceful night’s sleep.
4. Aids In Temperature Regulation
To ensure your baby remains comfortable, make sure you are using only the best in quality and breathability – like Baby K’tan’s Newborn Swaddle. This blanket guarantees that your little one won’t become too warm while still providing them with soothing swaddling benefits. Avoid “double swaddling” or using a too-heated blanket. Multiple layers of clothing might cause your infant to overheat, increasing the risk of SIDs.
5. Aids In Colic Relief
Any parent who has had a colicky infant will tell you that it is one of the most challenging parenting situations. Some parents express feelings of helplessness as a result of their inability to quiet their screaming infant. Colic is supposed to be caused by a growing digestive system, which makes it harder for your infant to digest food.
Read More: How To Swaddle With Arms Out
Swaddle Your Baby
To wrap your infant, you must first learn the right swaddling method. For step-by-step guidance on how to swaddle your infant, go to this info-graphic and the directions below.
1. Fold over one of the blanket’s corners and lay it flat on a changing table, bed, or floor.
2. Place your baby on the blanket, face up, with his head in the folded corner.
3. Wrap the right corner of the blanket over your infant (right arm straight down by his side) and tuck the end of the blanket underneath him.
4. Lift the blanket’s bottom corner up and place it over his feet.
5. Gently tuck the left corner of your blanket around your baby, exposing only his head and neck with their arm straight at their side.
6. Ensure that your newborn’s lower body is still able to move freely, and take care not to swaddle them too tightly around their legs and hips. If a baby is wrapped up too firmly for an extended period of time it can cause hip dysplasia or even dislocation.
Read More: How To Co-Sleep With Twins
Burritos Swadling Tips
1. Choose a lightweight and breathable cotton blankets, such as muslin or flannel. Avoid using thick, bulky materials; they can cause your infant to overheat.
2. Make sure the swaddle isn’t too tight. Use just enough fabric to keep the baby snug without restricting their movement.
3. Don’t cover your baby’s head while swaddling them, since this increases the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).
4. Always check on your infant during nap time and make sure the swaddle hasn’t become undone or twisted around him/her in uncomfortable ways. If you notice anything wrong, simply adjust the wrap until it is loose but secure again.
Read More: Should Twins Sleep In The Same Room?
Yes, you should wrap your infant in a blanket for naps. Swaddles are a secure and reliable way to make your infant feel safe, cozy, and at ease, so they can receive the rest they require and establish a positive sleep connection. In the blog post above, all the advantages and techniques of swaddling are discussed.