The initial few weeks after delivery would be a tiring phase for both the mother and the newborn.While the mother would need to adjust to the new entrant into her life and all of his/her whims and fancies, the toddler would be for the first time seeing a world that is quite different from what he/she was used to inside his/her mother’s womb. And so even small sounds, movements or even gestures can unnerve him/her and he/she would start crying aloud.
It is at this point that the mother would resort to some technique or the other in order to pacify him/her. And an age old technique that is guaranteed to soothe infants is the process called swaddling.
Why Do We Need To Swaddle A Baby
Swaddling refers to wrapping an infant snugly in a comfortable blanket in order to comfort him/her in case he/she feels insecure, has trouble sleeping, or is uncomfortable with his/her own muscle movements.
Swaddling can effectively soothe an inconsolable infant and can even prevent conditions like colic. However, it needs to be done correctly in order for both the mother and the baby to be comfortable.
How To Swaddle A Baby
Here are some simple tips on how to swaddle a baby. So if your infant is throwing a tantrum for no reason at all, follow these tips to swaddle him/her so that he/she stops crying.
Choose A Blanket
Use a soft blanket to wrap your infant. The material you choose needs to be effective with respect to the weather. Choose a large one that can be comfortably wrapped around your baby.
Spread the blanket on the floor, making sure that it is flat on all sides. Next bend back a corner to a small extent to act as a head rest for your baby.
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Place your baby on the blanket (in the middle) in such a way that the top of the blanket corresponds with his/her shoulders. Alternatively, if you want his/her hands to be free (some babies prefer it), you can place him/her a little higher.
Take one corner of the blanket (either from the right or the left) and bring it around your baby’s body. You can tuck the corner behind his/her body and vary the snugness according to how tight you want the blanket to be.
Now bring the bottom portion of the blanket upwards, making sure that you leave some room for the feet to move around a bit. If the blanket tends to cover your baby’s face, fold it inwards to reduce the length a bit. Tuck the folded end underneath the first tuck neatly so that it doesn’t come out half way in between.
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Complete The Wrap
Now bring the other end of the blanket (right or left) around your baby’s body just like you did for the first tuck. Remember though that this time the blanket needs to cover both the first tuck and the bottom tuck.
Slowly fold the blanket as far as it will go beyond your baby’s back. If possible, try to tuck it in but don’t try to push it in lest your baby might start feeling uncomfortable. Once you have finished the process, slowly lift your baby, making sure that you don’t remove any of the tucks.
In the case where your baby wants his/her hands to be free, you can repeat the above process from below his/her chest. Just make sure to remove his/her hands from the way when you tuck in the blanket.
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Important Points To Remember
Although swaddling is considered a very good practice for mothers to soothe their infants, it could post risks to babies if it is practiced too much after more than a month. Babies who are continuously swaddled even after 1 month can face risks of developing issues in his/her movements and other motor developments.
Remember that you are wrapping your infant in a blanket that would already make him/her feel warm. So never swaddle your infant in a warm room as this can cause overheating which could possibly cause Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
Don’t try to swaddle your baby by force, especially if he/she doesn’t seem to like it. Attempt to swaddle him/her only when he/she doesn’t resist it.
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