Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Swaddling

I am in need of advice again, friends.  For the past week, Lilly has not been herself.  How so, you ask?  She's been waking up in the middle of the night.  GASP!  I know, she hasn't done that in months.   The reason she is waking up is because she is a total escape artist (Dan's words, not mine) and is somehow breaking out of her swaddle.  The first night it happened - last Wednesday, I think?, Dan swaddled her before bed time so I assumed his swaddling skills just weren't as excellent as mine are. :-)  The next night, I swaddled her so tight that my sister told me I was going to suffocate her, and Lord knows how but the little Houdini still got out!  I just don't understand it.  She starts out like this:


"Snug as a bug in a rug," as her namesake used to say.


And, inevitably, at least for the past week, she ends up like this:







Seriously.  HOW is she getting out?!  I guess I shouldn't complain, because it's not like she keeps me up all night.  She normally is up, eats (for good measure) and is back down in literally 10 minutes.  The problem is more that I never seem to be able to fall back asleep until my alarm is about to go off, and I'm exhausted the next day.  Sigh.


At first, I thought it was the swaddle.  We had been using the Summer Infant Swaddle Me blankets since shortly after we brought Lilly home from the hospital (we swaddled her the old fashioned way with a regular blanket for a few weeks until she got bigger), which I think I've blogged about before, and LOVED them:
The problem was that they started to get a little tight.  Not sure whether you got the memo that I have a total chunkster on my hands.  This did not stop us, and we kept using them until she absolutely outgrew them.  They apparently make bigger sizes, but they're hard to find - I've not been able to find them in a store yet.  I was close to ordering online when I remembered that we had a Halo brand swaddle to try.  I have been referring to it as the "baby straight jacket":


It zips AND velcroes, and she is still getting out.  How?!?!  She gave us a break night before last, so I thought I had finally gotten over this hump, but then last night she escaped again.  


The next thing I'm going to try is the miracle blanket, which my bestie let us borrow.  I think it is more of a baby straight jacket than the halo, and we're going to give it a shot tomorrow night:


I'll report back on how it goes.  Anyway, so now I'm wondering if this means it's time to stop swaddling?  Upon considering it, I'm inclined to think that the fact that she's waking herself up when her arms are out means she's not ready to stop being swaddled.  On the other hand, if she's breaking out of the swaddle, maybe it's time to stop.  I'm not sure which theory I should go with.


My question to you is this: how old was your baby when you stopped swaddling?  And how do you know when to stop?  I have read several different opinions on this.  Some people say by 4 months, others swaddled their children until 8 or 9 months.  Our pediatrician said that there is no hard deadline, that we can try to stop whenever we feel brave enough but she definitely can't be swaddled anymore once she can roll over while in the swaddle, because it's dangerous.  The problem is that when we've tried not swaddling L, she wakes herself up by jerking her arms.


Part deux of this question is: how do you go about weaning your child from the swaddle?  Again, there is lots of information out there.  The suggestions I've gotten, both from my research and word of mouth are:

  • Go cold turkey and let her sleep on her stomach.  I am not sure I can do this.  First, Lilly sort of hates tummy time unless she's propped up on something, like her boppy pillow, because she's nosey and likes to be able to see what's going on around her.  There is a wedge in her crib, but I'm still not sure it would work.  Second, I'm pretty sure I'd get even less sleep worrying that she'd suffocate.
  • One arm out.  This is the most common method, I think.  I'm just wary of it because her arms are the problem, and I'm afraid it will take a lot of getting used to for her and I will lose more sleep.  Selfish, I know, it's just that she's spoiled me by sleeping through the night for so long!
  • A sleep sack similar to the Halo sleep sack above but without the swaddle part.  So essentially her legs are in a bag looking thing but there are arm holes for her arms.  See above - I'm not sure this will work because the arms are our problem to begin with!
One thing I did find on quite a few message boards as a transition between swaddle and non-swaddle is this nifty thing called the Zipadeezip.  I guess a Mom invented it for her baby to help transition her out of a swaddle, and you wouldn't believe how many Moms on the internet rave about it:
Of all of the suggestions so far, this one seems like it has the most potential.  I ordered one of those suckers yesterday, and will report back on how it goes.  The reason I think it may work for Lilly is because of the arms.  There is room in it for her to move her arms and get used to having them "free," but she can't jerk them and wake herself up trying to put them over her head.  We'll see.  Really I just hope it fits my sweet little fatty.  Anyway, it's hard for me to be annoyed with her for waking me up because she seriously is just so dang cute, in my totally biased opinion:
Any suggestions on this dilemma that I haven't thought of?  Feedback is much appreciated, as is voting.  :-)

Happy hump day!

Sarah

2 comments:

  1. How did the Miracle Blanket work? I used to love that sucker! Also, when we weaned Abby from swaddling, we used something similar to the Zipadeezip (I can't recall the name of it). It worked for us!

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  2. Very informative blog for parents. Many parents does not know how to swaddle a baby. This is the safest method to keep their baby warm and comfort. These swaddling can be done with the luxurious and cozy baby blankets like Little Giraffe, Aden and anais and many more.

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