What is swaddling?
Swaddling is the term for snuggly wrapping your baby in a blanket or muslin with his arms either at his sides or across his chest. Certain practitioners recommend swaddling with the arms in the midline of the chest so the hands are near to the mouth for self-soothing. Swaddling is generally recommended for babies until 3 months old.
Why you should swaddle
Swaddling is great for newborns as it prevents them waking themselves up from their own startle reflex. It also mimics the tight comfort of the womb which allows newborns to slowly adjust to life outside the womb.
When you should swaddle
Newborns can be swaddled for naps or bedtime or when they are being fussy. The warm, snug environment is soothing and helps limit external stimuli which can cause over stimulation and fussiness.
How to swaddle baby
Lay a blanket out like a diamond with one point where baby’s head will rest – then fold that top corner down to make a straight edge. Lay baby down on the blanket on his back and so his neck and head are above that straight edge. Bring baby’s right arm to the midline and fold that corner across his arm and tuck it under his left side. Fold the bottom of the blanket up allowing enough space for their legs to mov
Now repeat the same technique with his left arm, tucking the blanket under his right side of his body. The remaining balnket should be pulled across your baby's front and then wrap all the way around his back. The blanket should be snug but not tight.
What to use for swaddling
Cellular cotton blankets or muslins are perfect for swaddling a baby.