Why We Swaddle and How It’s Helpful

Swaddling? What’s that?

If you haven’t heard of swaddling yet, it simply means to wrap your little newborn up like a burrito. It looks really cute too.

But WHY do we swaddle?

Wrapping our babies up like burritos…. It seems kind of bizarre, right? There is some science behind why we do this and how it helps your baby calm down and sleep better. 

In 1994, the American Academy of Pediatrics shared that parents should be ensuring their newborn babies sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). This sounds simple, but it can feel IMPOSSIBLE for some babies to be happy to sleep on their backs. Well, here is how the swaddle can help!

Have you ever been told by an older relative or friend that if you just put your baby to sleep on their stomach, they will sleep better? Well, they actually might, but you still don’t want to do it; their back is safest. It may help because our babies are born with a moro reflex, also known as the startle reflex. Have you noticed that your newborn jerks occasionally, and if they are sleeping, it wakes them up? This is the Moro/startle reflex in full swing. In the womb, this was never an issue as they were snug and protected in your tummy! This is where swaddling comes in! Swaddling your baby keeps their arms contained, helping them feel snug and secure, just like they would in the womb. The best part is that swaddling keeps this reflex happily contained while safely snoozing on their backs. 

So basically, it can solve all your baby’s problems… right? Well, I don’t know about that, but it sure can help!

What kind of swaddle would you suggest?

Personally, I want you to stay away from full swaddle blankets. They are complicated for new and tired parents, and they’re mostly never wrapped snug enough. They also pose a risk to come undone, causing a bassinet full of loose blankets (remember, we want the bassinet or crib to be totally bare to be safe). 

To make your life easier, I would purchase a zipper or velcro swaddle. These swaddles will keep your baby feeling nice and cozy without overheating with a bunch of blankets. Plus, it’s just super quick, easy, and convenient for parents and middle-of-the-night feedings and changes. Every minute matters when you’re sleep-deprived!

One of my favorite swaddles out there is the Embe Swaddle (pictured above). This swaddle is zipper AND velcro, helping them to stay snuggly and cozy for longer. They also offer options for legs out and arms out for easy transition out of the swaddle when it’s the time! 

You can use my code: COZYBABY15 for 15% off your purchase! Click here to shop your Embe Swaddle. 

I’m also a huge fan of the Ollie Swaddle linked here. This swaddle is of great quality and keeps your baby lovely and snug (helping them sleep better and longer). 

But my baby HATES the Swaddle!

Swaddling can be a real art and can take some practice. It is all about a little technique, timing, and practice. If you find you’re really struggling, I have a newborn sleep guide that is there to guide you through it, step by step. This downloadable e-guide is a comprehensive handbook for surviving the fourth trimester; it includes education & direction on setting a helpful sleep foundation for your newborn baby. Its purpose is to give you a sense of direction, confidence, and empowerment during this typically wonderful but exhausting time.

There is SO MUCH information out there. This guide keeps it simple and all in one place. No need to scour the internet in the middle of the night anymore; you’ll have all the information you need right here!

Topics covered include:

  • Sleep education & direction for baby’s aged 0-16 weeks
  • The Science of Baby Sleep
  • Safe Sleep Checklist
  • Sleep Environment
  • Nutrition & Feedings
  • Age-Specific Awake Times & Sleepy Cues
  • Correcting Day & Night Confusion
  • How to Implement Routines
  • Calming a Fussy Newborn
  • How to realistically lay a great sleep foundation, moving towards independent sleep initiation (with absolutely zero crying)
  • How to lengthen night sleep, gently & gracefully

Don’t wait! Say NO to feeling confused & defeated by your newborn’s sleep. Click here to download.

Alice Bloomfield

Alice is a certified Pediatric Sleep Consultant. After enduring sleepless nights and feeling confused and defeated as a new mother, Alice delved into the world of baby sleep, unloading a passion she couldn’t keep to herself. This passion led her to become certified in pediatric sleep so she could help other struggling mama’s like she did.  It’s now her goal to help other mothers feel confident in their baby’s natural sleep habits, get better sleep, and get all members of the family feeling rested!


Note: Guest blog posts are shared for informational and educational purposes and may not reflect the official policy or position of SlumberPod (parent company, Dovetail Essentials, LLC), our employees, and/or contractors.

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