..where little means a lot

Are You A New Mom?
Get free samples of Baby formula, Diaper
Baby Magazines, and Coupons.

By Planning Family

Swaddling Your Baby

Swaddling offers a newborn baby warmth and security - a snug wrap feels like a big hug to that tiny body. A good wrap is not a surefire way of calming a colicky baby but it does make carrying the little one easier and safer. It also helps baby to sleep more soundly on his back. Since swaddling is restrictive, it may hinder motor development; a full-body swaddle is not recommended after baby turns 2 months old. Babies this old will enjoy the looser version of the snug wrap.


It is ideal to use light cotton material - square muslin or rectangular piece of thin cloth is appropriate for the tropical climate. Flannel or toweling material will suit the cooler climate.


The three popular techniques that can be used are: swaddling with both arms in; swaddling with both arms out and swaddling with one arm out.

Basic snug wrap

All those receiving blankets you have will come in handy now. This basic wrap may take a while to master. Swaddling is a snap; follow these simple rules:

• Place the square or rectangle blanket on a flat comfortable surface in a diamond shape with a point at the top. Fold down the top tip of the diamond so that it touches the center of the blanket.

• Place your baby on his back with his head above the fold and shoulders just below it.

• With one hand hold your baby's right arm at his side and pull the top right corner of the blanket with your other hand tightly down diagonally across his body. Tuck the material under baby's left buttock and back. Pull the right side of the blanket across baby's body and tuck it under the right side.

• With baby's arms safely at his sides, pull the bottom corner up and tuck it behind his left shoulder. If the blanket is not long enough you can always tuck it into a V at the neck area. Pull the left end of the blanket around baby's body just like a belt and tuck the last bit of material in the neck area at the right side.

• When swaddling, always pull the material tighter than you might think is comfortable because newborns crave a snug fit. A helpful rule of the thumb is that you should be able to slide your hand between the blanket and your baby's chest. Any tighter is worrying and any looser means your efforts will be futile. Another issue is movement: baby's arms should be held still in the wrap while the legs have enough room to move.

Wrap with both arms out

• Spread the cloth on a suitable surface with one corner folded at a downward angle (diamond shape). Place baby on the sheet with her head and shoulders above the folded corner and the tips of the sheet reaching her armpits.

• Fold the corner near baby's left arm underneath her left armpit and tuck it across her chest. Next fold the bottom end of the cloth up.

• Lift her right arm and tuck the cloth under her right armpit and bring it over her tummy and across to the other side so that corner tucks under baby's back. Swaddling this way allows baby some arm mobility and will not overheat her. She is free to play with her hands and fingers.

Wrap with one arm out

• Follow step one as above.

• Fold the corner near baby's left arm over her shoulder with her arm tucked in and tuck the cloth lightly across baby's right chest.

• Lift her right arm up and tuck the other end under baby's armpit. Bring the cloth over baby's tummy and across to the left side and tuck it under baby's back.

• Both wrapping with one arm and both arms out are more suited to an older baby; for newborns right up to 60 days old, it is best to wrap baby snugly.

Good to know

• Babies can be swaddled as soon as they are born.

• Fussy babies need to be swaddled more.

• Bundling babies prevents them from startling themselves awake or scratching themselves.

• Most babies are ready to go without swaddling after they turn 3-4 months old, although some sleep better bundled up to one year of age.

• Babies need to be wrapped 12-24 hours in the start when they are really little; after 2 months the wrap time can be reduced.

• To check if baby is overheated, feel her ears and fingers. If it's hot, red and sweaty she is probably overwrapped.

• Most newborn babies need a few months of cozy swaddling before they can handle the great big world.

• Swaddling helps sensitive babies by muffling their startled reactions

Share this
Disclaimer: Information contained on this Web site is intended solely to make available general summarized information to the public. It should not be substituted for medical advice. It is your responsibility to consult with your pediatrician and/or health care provider before acting on any advice on this web site. While OEM endeavors to provide up-to-date and accurate information, it is not liable for any advice whatsoever rendered nor is it liable for the completeness or timeliness of any information on this site.
Home | About Us | Preconception | Pregnancy | Parenting |

Free Newsletters
| Contact Us | Feedback | Sitemap
All Rights Reserved. © 2022 Welcome Baby Home | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use
Just had a baby? Click Here