To Swaddle or Not to Swaddle, that is the question - breastfeeding / chestfeeding and swaddling
When you see a picture of a newborn baby in a bassinet they're often all swaddled up, sleeping soundly and warm as toast... but wait, is that a good thing?
As always I’m here to present facts not tell you what to do. You’re the expert of how your family functions, not me.
𝙒𝙝𝙮 𝙢𝙤𝙨𝙩 𝙥𝙚𝙤𝙥𝙡𝙚 𝙨𝙬𝙖𝙙𝙙𝙡𝙚
⚡️ Can suppress or contain a young infant’s startle reflex (moro reflex) which sometimes wakes babies up
⚡️ Babies may sleep longer stretches
⚡️ Can help calm a baby born physiologically addicted to drugs
⚡️ Some babies cry less when swaddled
⚡️ Tradition: it’s what we think you should do with lil babes and what we were taught in prenatal class.
𝙒𝙝𝙮 𝙄 𝙬𝙖𝙣𝙩𝙚𝙙 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙠𝙞𝙥 𝙞𝙩 - and 𝙬𝙝𝙮 𝙞𝙩 𝙢𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩 𝙣𝙤𝙩 𝙝𝙚𝙡𝙥 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙬𝙞𝙩𝙝 𝙮𝙤𝙪𝙧 𝙛𝙚𝙚𝙙𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙜𝙤𝙖𝙡𝙨
⚡️ The startle reflex may have a protective function—some babies require this startle function to keep them alert to the point of reminding them to breathe in the night
⚡️ Can cause baby to overheat (increasing risk of SIDS) if baby is already dressed in a fuzzy warm outfit, or if room is hot
✨ Blanket can come loose and obstruct airways
✨ Can cause hip problems if baby is swaddled in a way where hips can’t bend up and out
✨Swaddled newborn infants gain less weight in the first couple weeks vs. those infants that aren’t swaddled!!
✨ New little babies waking frequently in the night can amp up our supply—more removal and stimulation at the chest in the first couple weeks can = more hormone receptors in the breast / increased capacity for milk making
✨ babies love their hands and can use them to soothe, and made friends with them in utero
✨ Unsafe to bedshare when infant is swaddled
✨ Some infants can start rolling super early, like 8 weeks. They may need their hands to ensure that their airway isn’t compromised
For the record, I would come into my room and find my kid swaddled all the time 🤔 because even my partner couldn’t wrap her head around not swaddling a newborn. We compromised on a cozy onesie and sometimes I’d agree to an arms out, loose yet secure swaddle for supervised naps. 🤷🏻♀️