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Benefits and DO's and DON'Ts of Swaddling Your Baby

Swaddling is an ancient method of wrapping newborns in a thin blanket or cloth. But it also serves a very important purpose - helping babies stay calm and sleep better. When your baby is swaddled, he or she is taken back to the days in the womb, when everything was comfortable, safe and snug. The first time your child visited the children's hospital, he probably came back wrapped in a neat little bag, from which only his fluffy head was sticking out. This is because nurses know one of the secrets to a happy and calm baby: swaddling.

Swaddling has a number of key benefits for both parents and babies - when done correctly and safely
  • Swaddling mimics mother's touch for longer sleep

  • Swaddled babies experience less anxiety and prevents unnecessary wake-ups due to the startle reflex.

  • Swaddling may reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)

  • Swaddling soothes babies with colic. When swaddled, they feel secure and safe just like they felt in the womb.

  • Swaddling in the hands-over-heart position is the preferred sleeping position for babies; in this position they learn to self-soothe and can get back to sleep on their own.

The do's and don'ts of swaddling
  • Do place your baby on his or her back to sleep while swaddled. Sleeping swaddled and on their belly can increase a baby's risk of SIDS.
  • Do use a light cotton blanket that is breathable and not liable to cause overheating.
  • Don't cover your baby's face. This can lead to overheating or suffocation.
  • Don't wrap too tightly. Swaddle too snugly, and your baby could be at risk for overheating, decreased circulation, or over-extension of their hips and knees.


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