Ahh, Swaddling, one of the cornerstone tricks in the motherhood trade. And love it or hate it, it’s a little skill you’ll inevitably have a brush with during the newborn days with baby….Now, I’m not gonna lie. I definitely have a love-hate relationship with swaddling.
*Shock, horror, disbelief*
Yes, t’is true. I do.
Now, I know all about the solid benefits of swaddling, and I have love for it purely because when in the time of need, swaddling can truly work magic. However there’s also a very small list of reasons why i’m not always a fan of it. And I know, I’m not alone in that. So when Love to Dream asked me to try out their Stage One – Swaddle UP, I was open to seeing if it could swing me. And now, after trialing it, I can honestly say that with Love to Dream’s Swaddle UP, in my opinion, it can really help make cashing in on the benefits of swaddling that much easier.
So much so, Ive teamed up with my friends at Love to Dream to give one lucky reader one of these Swaddle UPs to try for themselves. But first let me give you the lowdown first.
So what’s the big deal about Swaddling?
Well, for those not yet familiar with it, swaddling is basically a technique of wrapping baby with a blanket in a snug way that supposedly gives then a sense of security and comfort, a call back to the good old days of being safe and snug as a bug in your belly.
The special technique with which you wrap them may even help prevent them being disturbed by their own startle reflex during sleep, thus promoting longer sleep. (And every parent just perked up at the prospect of more sleep!heehee)
Swaddling can also help calm baby in times of over stimulation or overtiredness.
All in all, swaddling just sounds like a badass superhero in the babystakes right?Right!
I mean who doesn’t want a calmer baby who feels more secure in this earthside world who sleeps longer?!?
So what’s my boggle then?
For starters, I used to hate that traditional swaddling often meant that baby couldn’t self soothe if he wanted to. It looked so much like a strait jacket than anything else to me, even if I knew swaddling was helpful. And I’m a big advocate for developing healthier sleep habits in baby,, part which self soothing forms a basis of.
Also, despite what many a well meaning nurse/grandma/other mom may advise you, swaddling your newborn while you try to get the hang of breastfeeding is not in your best interest of success! Sure you’d think it makes it easier to tuck away those busy little hands, and those razor sharp baby nails while you try and figure this out. But babies actually need their hands to learn this new skill. So in cases like this, I’d usually skip the swaddle and save it only for sleep times,not feeding.
And, well, have you ever just tried swaddling before!? It can get pretty damn tricky at times. It’s something that seems so simple, and yet I’ve many a time watched with great frustration as my baby pulls yet another Houdini mere seconds after I thought I’d done it properly. And when you’re in the middle of night, tensions are high, sleep is little, eyelids heavy and the crying is loud, sometimes trying to get the swaddle right just feels like yet another thing you just can’t figure out…Yet another thing to add to your proverbial momming list of failures (we’re never short on them, are we?)
Maybe I’m not doing it right? Maybe not tight enough? But hello! If you do it too tight you could cause hip dysplasia. It doesn’t even take much to do it – and happens more often than you’d expect.
But then enter Swaddle UP and suddenly all those reasons we as parents often want to shy away from swaddling, suddenly don’t seem so bad anymore:
First up, guys, with Love to Dream, it couldn’t be easier to swaddle your baby. I have popped Remy-James in there during easy, calm times, as well as during absolute suicide- hour- pull- your- hair- out moments. And each time, there was zero hassle in getting him in there. The easy zip up design makes it literally as easy as one-two-three! No need to figure it all out.
Also, there were no worries about whether it was too tight and mom guilt myself about whether or not Im causing my child hip dysplacia. Swaddle UP’s one of kind design has been acknowledged by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute, as it considers the importance of healthy hip development during infancy…And based on his happy face, it was clear that he was quite comfy in there.
Need I remind you we’re in the heart of summer, with some sweltering days to boot. Not to mention, our room is somehow the hottest in the house. For this reason I found that the double zip design an absolute boon, as I could free his little leggies to not be covered but still maintain the swaddle around his arms to keep him settled.
Also another fear and safety concern I used to have was when making these cute baby burritos when swaddling the traditional way, they kind of open to rolling around. Especially the wiggly worm babies; And Remy is quite the mover & the shaker. So swaddling was not something I used for sleep purposes, lest I was right there next to baby all the time. Lord knows the tales of SIDS has set the fear of God in me and got me checking on him (all my babies) breathe night and day. However, Love to Dream‘s unique wing design not only mimics a very natural sleeping position he uses,but also now prevents him from accidentally rolling over onto his face.
As for the calming effect, if you’re wondering whether this simple yet unique design actually has the same benefits of soothing as traditional swaddling could. I’m here to say yes, it absolutely did. There have been days, especially in the last two weeks (with first growth spurts & vaccinations in between) where I had no idea how to calm my little Remy-James down, or what he wanted or needed, and was going through all the basic needs checklist, which only got him more riled up. Until one day, I just grabbed the Swaddle UP, zipped him in there, cranked up the white noise and swayed with him. And, I swear, almost instantly he calmed down. Even before I started swaying. It was like I flipped a switch on him. And that wasn’t just a once off. Anytime he got into a state like that where I missed the ball and he’s overtired, the Swaddle UP and white noise combo has saved my buns every time.
The only thing that I cannot vouch for however, is the length of sleep or “better” sleep. I can absolutely tell you that it definitely helped my newborn settle faster into his sleep, but truthfully I cannot account for better or longer sleeps wrt the Swaddle UP. But, let me be very clear, this is not due to the design itself, but rather due to an individual & personal challenge that we sit with our baby. (All our babies, in fact).
You see, due to Swaddle UP’s design, a baby must only sleep on his back obviously. However, my kids all suffer from severe winds and cramps due to my “fast milk” (as in, I have an over supply of milk that leaves my kids choking and spluttering every time they feed, and as a result they end up with a build up of winds through out the day). And as such, sleeping on his back means that he’s not comfortable for too long, no matter how tired he is or how sweet the sleep is, and wakes constantly. So, Remy-James’ short sleeps using the Swaddle UP is no direct reflection on the product itself. Especially since a few other mom’s have informed me that their personal experience with Swaddle UP has shown improved and longer sleeps in their babies.
I sincerely believe that this product may have promoted better sleep if our situation was otherwise, especially since it’s design, unlike most traditional swaddling, allows baby to freely bring hands to mouth thereby enabling self-soothing.
Now, the ability to self soothe is something that, as a sleep-health aware mother, is very important to me. By encouraging and laying the foundations for healthy sleep down within the first few months of my child’s life, it helps ensure that baby will have healthier sleep habits going forward. And that’s not just great news for mom & dad, but extremely important for baby’s brain development – which has been linked to good quality sleep. If you’ve known me since my first kid, you’d know I’m a huge stickler about developing healthy sleep habits in kiddies – not just so mommy doesn’t end up in the looney bin, but for baby’s brain development especially.
Therefore, considering Swaddle Up’s overall performance, safety and health considerations of it’s unique design, not to mention its soft to the touch and breathable fabric, I have to give it a thumbs up. It is a product I would certainly recommend to all parents. (So hello(!) Baby shower gift ideas!) Yes, ALL parents, as they have a three stage approach that caters for all your child’s growing needs up to the age of 36 months. Have a look over here to see their full range.
And because I believe it is an absolutely worthwhile product for any parent of a littley to have, I teamed up with Love to Dream to give one away. Yay!!
The prize is only from the Swaddle UP Original range, i.e. one of these three here.
All you have to do is:
1) Comment here below telling me what you love about Love to Dream’s Swaddle UP
2) Follow/Like Love to Dream on Facebook here.
BOOM! You’re entered!
Entries close 18 March 2019. Winner will be announced here on the blog on the 19 March 2019.
Only open to South African residents.
Winner to claim prize within 72 hours, otherwise forfeits.
Judges decision is final.
Here’s to sweet slumbers! Enter, enter, enter! X