How to swaddle your baby?
Swaddling is an ancient tradition and is common in e.g. USA and Australia.
Dr. Claire McCarthy from Harvard Medical School describes the pros and cons of swaddling:
It makes the baby feel safe by simulating the environment inside the womb. It helps many children sleep better and has been shown to be especially good for children with neurological problems, colic or children born with a drug addiction. It also helps babies fall asleep on their backs and is therefore good for preventing SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). If the baby wakes itself up with arms flailing (the startle reflex), it may be tempting to put the baby on the stomach, but swaddling the baby on the back is safer in terms of SIDS.
The disadvantages can be that tight swaddling can aggravate hip problems, loose swaddling can cause suffocation and a swaddled baby placed on its side or stomach is at increased risk of SIDS.
- Always lay the child on his back. (When the baby can start to turn himself, he should not be swaddled. However, the startle reflex usually subsides after about three months and therefore also the need for swaddling). Do not use a loose blanket that can come off and end up in front of the face.
Do you want to read more about what Dr. Claire McCarthy writes about Swaddling click here