Swaddling a baby is an essential part of taking care of a little one. Several experts have noted that swaddling resembles the womb’s closeness and that swaddling a baby brings them comfort because of that fact. Unfortunately, many new parents don’t know how to wrap a baby the right way. Harvard Medical School notes that while swaddling can be beneficial to calming some babies, it’s not always a good idea. The final decision is yours, and if you decide to swaddle your baby, you should go about it the right way.
The Right Way to Swaddle
As the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) notes, poor swaddling can potentially cause hip problems in kids. Because of this, if you are going to swaddle your baby, you need to know the correct procedure. The stepwise process for swaddling a baby is as follows:
- Lay a blanket out so that it’s flat, with one corner folded down.
- Place the baby face up so that their head rests above the folded edge.
- Straighten the baby’s left arm, then wrap the left corner of the blanket around the right side of their body, placing it under their right arm.
- Tuck the right arm down, and then perform the same action with the right side of the blanket and the left side of the baby.
- Fold/twist the bottom of the sheet to be loosely tucked under one side of the baby.
- Ensure that the wrap is not too tight, and the baby’s hips can move freely. This step is vital since it ensures that swaddling doesn’t lead to hip damage for the baby.
Baby Wrap or Swaddle Sack?
Swaddle sacks are usually sold in the same places you’d get Franklink & Ben Cribs. Some parents swear that they’re a more efficient way of swaddling a baby to a wrap, but that’s not strictly true. Both wraps and swaddle sacks perform the same function. Some parents are never able to get the hang of a swaddle tie, and so the sack might be their best option for swaddling their babies. Swaddling doesn’t even need to cover a baby’s entire body. Some parents simply wrap the top half and leave the baby’s legs and hips free to move.
Is It Worth it to Swaddle a Baby?
This decision comes down to the parent’s preference as well. Some babies love being swaddled because of the comfort it gives them, but parents prefer to avoid it because of the potential risks it can post to their baby’s development. Whether you choose to or not is your decision. However, if you do, going about it the right way will limit the chances of swaddling causing lasting damage to your baby.