Before our first baby was born, we took childbirth classes at our local hospital. Among the obvious topics covered such as “the birthing process” and “methods of coping with pain in labor”, some newborn care basics were covered as well. One of these was “how to swaddle a baby”.
My husband, who is inclined to embrace friendly competition with gusto, proudly took home the title of “Swaddling Master”, when he won the speed swaddling contest among the expectant dads. Now after welcoming six sweet babies in the past eight years, we have had plenty more opportunity to practice!
Here are the basic steps for swaddling a baby:
1. Find an appropriately sized blanket made of breathable fibers: Blankets between 40 and 48 inches square are the perfect size for swaddling.
A blanket with breathable fibers is important, so that baby is not as inclined to overheat. Fleece blankets appear soft and cozy, but the synthetic fibers can trap heat and moisture, which can cause baby to sweat. The Milk & Honey Wrap® made with organic cotton and bamboo is ideal for swaddling. The lightweight jersey knit (42 x 42 in.) is soft and airy, and the cozy cable knit (45 x 45 in.) is lush and warm.
2. Hold the blanket in a diamond shape and place on a flat surface.
3. Fold down the top corner, so that the folds are about half-way down the upper sides of the diamond. The Milk & Honey Wrap® has strategically placed labels, which indicate where the blanket should be folded.
4. Gently lay your baby on the blanket, so that his shoulders are just below the folded edge.
5.Bring the left corner of the blanket across him, and tuck the corner under his left hip.
6. Bring the bottom corner up to the baby’s chest, and tuck under his left arm.
7. Bring the right corner across the baby, and wrap around and under his torso.
8. Check for safety: The fabric should be smooth and snug, but not tight. You should be able to slide one hand between the baby’s chest and the blanket. The fabric should not cover the baby’s mouth or nose.
9. Enjoy the peace of mind knowing that your baby will be warm and secure as he sleeps.
photo credits: Sunday Grant