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What Should Your Baby Wear To Sleep? A Guide For New Parents

Updated on March 23, 2017
Britta Paige profile image

Britta is a former radiologic technologist and current stay-at-home mom who enjoys writing about parenting and raising her sweet daughter.

When your little bundle arrives home from the hospital you may still have many questions that have gone unanswered, and sleep is one of them. Experts agree that your baby should sleep flat on their back (unless they suffer from certain medical conditions) without any blankets or pillows in a crib that is up to current standards, with room temp between 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit. So now that WHERE they should sleep has been answered for you, what about what WEAR to sleep?

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Dressing Your Newborn

Newborns love sleep, they sleep most of the day and night at first, what some newborns seemingly love more than sleep is to be swaddled. Swaddling reminds your little one of their comfy, warm, tiny former home located in your uterus. Surprisingly, you have options for swaddling too! When we left the hospital with my daughter, we snagged a few hospital blankets she was wrapped in as they were the perfect size for swaddling her up like a little nice and tight burrito, these sufficed for the first couple of weeks as I wasn't up for swaddle blanket browsing at the store anyway. I eventually mustered the courage to face daylight and purchased Muslin swaddle blankets, these are lightweight and popular due to the variety of uses for them. One downside is price, the cost of a package was over thirty dollars at my nearest Target, and after paying that price I never ended up using them to swaddle. Perhaps it was the brand I purchased but the size alone made them difficult to swaddle properly and the thin material of the blanket resulted in a broken swaddle after a few movements from my little one. When I managed to make another trip to Target a few weeks later I settled for the Swaddleme Velcro wraps, these were simple to use and not quite as pricey as the Muslin blankets. You need no technique at all, and the velcro holds the swaddle tight so you don't have too. At this point, my daughter was old enough to hate her arms being tied down, and these swaddles made it possible to keep her covered while leaving her arms out of the fold. We used this product until she was nearly five months old, and probably would've stopped earlier had I noticed how snug her chubby thighs where when stuffing them into the swaddle. (Oops) Once your baby shows signs of rolling over, it is wise to cease all swaddling to avoid any potential situations of a blocked airway

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Older Babies

Once your tiny human outgrows the swaddle you have a few options. The brand Halo makes a type of wearable blanket called a Sleepsack that has gained quite a bit of popularity. This provides a safe alternative to blankets and is simple to use, just slide in baby's arms and zip! You can buy these at most retail stores in a variety of textures and colors, but they will set you back about twenty dollars. Personally, I had purchased one beforehand and later regretted it, the material tended to bunch up on her (I had the newborn version with swaddle flaps attached) and created an awkward and seemingly uncomfortable fit. After ditching the swaddleme wraps we went straight for footie pajamas, and I love them! Not only are they simple to use, they keep her warm in our 70 degree bedroom. You can also incorporate putting on your little ones pajamas into your bedtime routine, which signifies to baby that they are getting ready for sleep. Unless we have some sort of mess, we usually wear them two nights in a row before washing them (maybe a little gross but momma don't got time for that) and they come off first thing in the morning; unless we are having a lazy day, that means pajamas ALL DAY LONG! You have so many adorable colors and styles to choose from, and you can purchase them material that best suited for the time of year. When your baby hits the one year mark, experts say it is safe to add a blanket and pillow to the mix in her/his crib.

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