every new parent knows that the art of swaddling a baby is both essential and elusive to master. how come the nurses at the hospital can wrap them tight as a burrito in less than 10 seconds? basically, the working parent who can swaddle the quickest and tightest will generally have the calmest, cooiest baby most quickly. good for working parent nerves. while dads tend to be better at swaddling b/c tend to be stronger, we found through experience that the blanket, not so much the technique, is the key to the perfect swaddle.
ironically, most baby blankets are terrible for swaddling. the are cute and fleecy and soft -- good for strollers, in the sling or while holding them. but they do not hold a swaddle wrap worth a darn, nor or most of them long enough to do a complete swaddle wrap.
tip #1: for the daytime swaddle:
get yourself a swaddledesigns
blanket specifically for swaddling. buying 2 is better, for the inevitable times when the first one gets dirty. they are worth every penny for the extra naptime they will buy you. their secret is that they are extra-large yet thin material, and also made of 100% cotton. even a rookie swaddler can get a baby swaddled in one of these bad boys very quickly, and baby won't get overheated being wrapped up so tightly in pure cotton.
tip #2: the nighttime swaddle:
how much would you pay for 30 minutes longer sleeping time at each stretch at night? how about an hour? yes, newborns generally get up to feed every 2-3 hours anyway, but in a tight swaddle, you can extend those glorious minutes of sleep time easily 30-60 minutes at a stretch. this is where you bring in the big swaddling guns - the kiddopotamus swaddle me
we didn't find them so useful during the day when you needed to unswaddle more frequently for feeding, changing, etc. but when you want them to stay swaddled for hours at a time at night to reinforce the message "nightime is for sleeping", these things are great. they have a little pouch for the legs and then you velcro the arms in place for the duration.
we tried both cotton and fleece, small and large. i would recommend the fleece ones only if you gave birth to a winter baby (in the late fall through february), and need a little extra warmth at night. otherwise, cotton is preferable to avoid overheating. also, if you've got an average sized newborn, you'll grow out of the small size and into the large size in about 2 months, so you might want to buy both sizes up front. from personal experience, there's nothing worse than growing out of the small size and not having this available at night until you buy the larger size (which you can get at ebay
for good price, but need to wait for up to a week to ship). there are sleepless nights and then there are SLEEPLESS NIGHTS. the kiddopotamus swaddle me will help you stay in the former category.
Labels: baby, blankets, kiddopotamus swaddle me, swaddle designs, swaddling, working parents