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Wrapping a baby can be a difficult thing to do if you have never done it before. But with practice and perseverance you will perfect it and your little one will be sleeping soundly in no time!
So firstly, why do we wrap our babies? The simple answer is, it makes them feel safe and secure, just like when they were in mummy’s tummy. It also helps prevent the startle reflex from waking them, ensuring they get a good rest without continually waking themselves up. And we all know if babies get a good sleep, so do parents!
Here is a link to Red Nose who have the latest information on how to sleep your baby safely when wrapped. They also have many other useful articles to help keep your little one safe whilst sleeping. This link discusses some studies about the benefits of wrapping babies. And this one goes to Red Nose’s link is it safe to wrap my baby?
Please, always make sure you sleep your baby safely.
So, what should you wrap your baby in? I use a few different things, all which my baby doesn’t mind. When its hot I use muslin wraps that my Aunt made for me that are nice and big, the ones from the shop always seem too small to get a good wrap. I also only put Bubby in a singlet suit and nappy in hot weather to prevent overheating, he also has a fan in his room. (My guy was born mid December, in Brisbane. Nice and hot)! In cooler weather, like we are having now, he is wrapped in a zipper bag, with a onesie and singlet suit underneath. At night when it is cold I add layers of flannelette and blankets, depending on how cold it is to how many layers I add. I always gently touch his head when he is asleep to see what his body temperature is feeling like and add more or take some layers away depending on how he feels.
You can also get baby wraps with velcro tabs which I use occasionally, and sleeping bags, which are great for when they start rolling over and must have there arms free.
SO lets get wrapping. As you can see Sterling is getting too old to be wrapped, He rolls over now which means he could start doing this in his sleep. At night he still sleeps next to me in his little crib, but when he moves to his room for night sleeps he will need to start sleeping in a sleeping bag and get out of the habit of being wrapped. (Insert sad face here).
The best way to achieve a good wrap is to have the wrap laid out ready to go before picking up your baby. This way you can place them exactly in the right position and your fabric won’t bunch, tangle or be crooked. If using a muslin wrap, fold down the top of the fabric around 20cm, and you want to lay your baby with the tops of their shoulders inline with the top of the fabric so only their head is sitting above the fabric.
Take their right arm and tuck it up under the fold, tucking the fabric on top of their body down next to their bottom creating a triangle type shape. Then take the fabric and fold it over their body, keeping their arm enclosed in the fold and over their chest. Tuck the fabric under the opposite side of their body firmly.
Repeat with their left arm, placing it in the fold, tucking the fabric on top of the arm down next to their bottom before lifting the fabric over their body, keeping their arm enclosed and tucking it under their body.
Pick up the fabric that is now left hanging down from your babies legs, give it a slight twist before opening it out and folding it up over their body, and also tucking each side underneath their body.
Congratulations you now have a wrapped baby!
Important tips to remember when wrapping a baby:
- Make sure not to overdress your bub. In hot weather a singlet and nappy under their muslin wrap is enough.
- Don’t wrap bub too tight. Make sure they can have some movement in their hips and breath freely.
- Never wrap a baby that is bed sharing, and if bed sharing make sure to read up on how to do this safely.
- Once bub can roll over, its time to stop wrapping. They will need their arms to lift their face and body should they roll onto their tummy. Switch to a sleeping bag instead.
You can head over to my DP Kids YouTube channel and watch me wrap Sterling here, as well as see me talk about different wrapping options.
I would also love to hear about how this blog entry or YouTube video helped you, and see a photo of your wrapped little one on my DP Kids Facebook page.
As always, you are welcome to leave feedback, or suggestions for future content!