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Swaddling and why it works

Wednesday, 7 August 2013  | 
 Peanut, Sammy's daughter all snuggled up in the corner! 

( too big for swaddling these days!)

 

 

 

One of the most exciting things about having a baby, for me, was the shopping. I absolutely loved it! All of the comments at the checkouts on my ‘lovely tidy little bump’ and the compliments were a massive mood-booster especially when I felt like I was just having a fat-spotty-mess day. I even enjoyed all of the ‘when my little boy was born... you’re having a boy aren’t you? You look like you’re carrying a boy’ comments. She was a girl. So when shopping one day I picked up a pack of Muslins which prompted another question at the checkout ‘are you going to swaddle?’ my response – probably not, I’m just going to wipe her puke up with these.

In typical Sammy style I went home and straight onto the internet to start researching on swaddling – well, after grabbing a handful of Hobnobs first. This was a massive downfall of mine while pregnant (not the Hobnobs) but over-researching everything to the point where it became an obsession. You can’t do anything, it would seem, without damaging your baby in some way. So when I read about hip problems in swaddled babies I decided against it. It was only a week or so after little Peanut was born that I realised the do-gooders of the online world were probably just like me; hobnob-munching idiots and that the best way to learn is to try it for yourself. Everyone has heard it before ‘every baby is different and you, their mother, know best’ and it’s so true.

Swaddling is an ancient technique that was always believed to help babies to settle off to sleep and to sleep for longer but somewhere along the line mums fell out of love with it. Nowadays its back in fashion and it’s no secret why. In my experience laying my girl down to sleep would always mean numerous trips back to her crib to pull her covers back over her cold little body again. Born in October it was pretty cold and being the little wriggler that she is, she’d always kick off her blankets. Soon enough the subject cropped up again in chats with the oracle (mother in law) and we decided to give swaddling a go – absolute genius! Not only did my mummified Peanut settle easier but she was warmer, more comfortable and I wasn’t forever panicking that she’d throw herself over onto her front with her flailing limbs all over the place. The best thing about swaddling for us was knowing that she liked it too because as soon as she was wrapped up she was snug and secure and ready to sleep, which, as any sleep deprived mum knows, is bliss!

The Fresh Prince George was seen very lovingly wrapped in the gorgeous Aden + Anais swaddle blankets which are available from Mummy & Little Me and if I could go back 9 months that’s exactly what Princess Peanut would be wrapped in too! Aside from wishing we’d tried it from the onset, the one thing I wish I’d have done is invest in some decent Muslins. Mine were cheap, really, really cheap because originally their purpose was much different to the comfort blanket they’ve now become. They’re tatty, lost their shape after the first wash and colours have faded so much they look as though they came from a dirty mattress on a rubbish tip but they’re quite loved. Over time, Peanut has developed a bit of an attachment to them and cuddles them to sleep when she wants to settle which is very cute but equally a bit gross when they’ve got milk stains (and the rest) all over them. Muslins are a must have so my advice would always be to buy the best that are available. If they’re good enough for the future King of our country they’re good enough for your little prince or princess too.