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Video:How to Swaddle a Baby

with Kathy Moore

Babies love to be held, and swaddling them in a blanket offers the same snugness of a good hug. Watch the steps to swaddle a baby, and learn why babies like to be swaddled when they sleep.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Swaddle a Baby

Hi! I'm Kathy Moore for About.com Parenting. Babies love to be held, and we love to hold them, but they need to learn to sleep on their own. Swaddling a baby in a blanket offers the same snugness of a good hug, but it frees up your arms. This program will show a simple way to swaddle a baby and why it is so important.

Choose a Blanket for Swaddling

First, choose an appropriate blanket. I find lightweight cotton or flannel works great. Make sure the blanket is at least twice as big, as the baby.

Begin to Swaddle the Baby

Fold down one corner of the blanket and place the baby's head in the middle of this triangle, with the head just above the fold.

Next, pull the left side of the blanket across the baby's body, pulling until it is snug. Make sure her arm is along her side or across her chest. Tuck this side under the baby.

Pull up the bottom of the blanket over the baby's toes and tuck it up and under the last fold, just below the baby's neck.

Last, take the baby's free arm and make sure it stays along her side while you pull the other end of the blanket across her body and tuck it snuggly underneath.

Adjust the Swaddle for Comfort

At first, you might feel as if you are pulling the blanket too tight and that the baby looks uncomfortable, almost mummy-like. We called our kids baby burritos. But it is that snugness that they like. It is calming and soothing and I think it reminds a baby of being in the womb.

Benefits of the Blanket Swaddle

A snug wrap keeps the baby from waking itself up by its own startle reflex. This is the same reason why babies should not be swaddled while they are awake. They need to move to develop strength and mobility.

Though it may take some practice, swaddling is a wonderful technique to learn. And your reward will be watching your baby sleep peacefully. Thanks for watching. To find out more, visit us on the Web at parenting.about.com.
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