why.i.swaddle

It’s interesting how much people actually care about the choices I make. I have had 2 people email me,  another Facebook me and yet another on the phone asking me why I swaddle.

THEY didn’t do that with their kids and “is it safe?” and “their kids slept okay without doing that” and….on and on and on

Listen, I don’t question your parenting so don’t question mine.

From the day Reeve was born, the nurses in the hospital swaddled Reeve. In fact, when he wasn’t swaddled they chewed my ass out.

Aside from the obvious reason I swaddle Reeve (it’s comforting to him) I do so for many reasons.

To silence those concerned let me outline them for you.

1. Reeve suffers from Flailing Arm Syndrome. Yes, at 4 months old he has not yet mastered Motor Control. Contrary to our practice and my explaining to him how much easier it would be if he would just keep his arms still, he just can’t do it. Nope, they flail around and smack him in the face when he isn’t swaddled. This wakes him up. Why would I encourage Flailing Arm Syndrome at 3am when we should all be deep in our REM patterns?

2. Babies are just tiny little things in this big, HUGE world. Sometimes, believe it or not, they need to feel secure. If my arms can’t be available to him at all hours of the day, then I’ll be damned if I won’t search high and low and online and in stores and make every effort possible to find an alternative that feels safe and secure to him.

3. Swaddled babies are less likely to die from SIDS. IS THIS NOT REASON ENOUGH?

4. In addition to Flailing Arm Syndrome, Reeve suffers from Likes to Gouge Holes In Mama’s Chest While Nursing Disease. If he’s swaddled, he is less likely to scar me or hear curse words at such a tender young age.

5. Routine. When Reeve is swaddled, he instantly calms down. He knows (because he is securely wrapped) that he is safe and it’s time to take a nap. This routine is why he sleeps 10+ hours a night and why I don’t have to battle with my baby at nap/nightime. The Swaddle helps him know what I expect of him.

6. Swaddled Babies Sleep Better. Stop. Repeat. Swaddled Babies Sleep Better. Now in case you didn’t absorb that, do it one more time just for me. THEY SLEEP BETTER! And the more they sleep, the more REM they experience and the more their brain grows….DUH!

Listen, I could go on and on with research and why I do it, but the truth of the matter is that Reeve is a great sleeper. He feels safe and doesn’t fuss when he’s swaddled. He eats about 8 times a day and when he’s swaddled he gets a FULL feeding, not a snack.

Yes, there are negatives to swaddling too. I am aware of all of these and combat each of them.

Overheating possibility? We have the thermostat low and a ceiling fan and cool mist humidifier on in the house at all times.

Risk of Vitamin D deficiency? Please…this kid goes to the pool, breast feeds and is tanner than I am.

Risk of rolling onto tummy? Not a chance in hell with the Wedge holding him in place.

You may not have swaddled your baby, but I bet you also didn’t get 10+ hours of sleep at night with an infant. I sleep so well that I have never felt healthier (even pre-baby) and I don’t have to worry about whether or not Reeve is well-enough rested. Can you say that when you had a newborn your house was just as clean as before and you never fell behind on laundry, got a shower each day AND had time to jog? Probably not….and I attribute each of those to all of us getting a good night’s rest.

So, leave the comments off my Facebook and leave your judgments at the door. Perhaps you should revisit THIS post where I say that RULE NUMBER ONE of being a parent is that you NEVER judge anothers’ parenting. As I have said from Day One, this blog is pure! Please keep it that way with no judgment…keep your life that way too!

20120718-173736.jpg

He loves this particular type of Swaddler called a Woombie. The flaps on his shoulders allow for arms out when I am ready to make that transition.

20120718-173741.jpg

Advertisements

9 thoughts on “why.i.swaddle

  1. jessie you just keep doing your thing. What’s right for some is not right for others. I didn’t swaddle because my kids got themselves out of the swaddle even when the nurses who are experts in my eyes put them in them. i also let my kids sleep on their stomachs from the day we got home from the hospital and most people don’t do that but that is how they wanted to sleep. Screw everyone else, do what works for you

  2. Do you like your Woombie? I think we’ll order one next, Elizabeth is about to outgrow her swaddleme blanket (getting too long for it). And I wish we had swaddle blankets with Abby. We tried swaddling her with receiving blankets and she broke out of it so fast so we quit doing it. And she didn’t sleep thru the night until 4 months old and would wake up a lot by flailing arms. So glad we invested in swaddling Elizabeth! She has slept thru the night since 5 weeks old, and it is fantastic!

    • Sarah, we do like the Woombie. It’s not tight enough in the chest to keep his arms from moving around inside of the sack, but we use a receiving blanket folded into fourths to hold his arms down. I will try to remember to take some pics of it tonight.

  3. Those same people will have other parents wishing they would have swaddled, swatted, and taught some social graces, also known as, manners. My new kick is manners are taught not absorbed through osmosis. It’s extremely hard to reciprocate an invite to those little darlings.

  4. Ha! Someone called you! That is insane. Wonder what they’d say if you directed them to my post in regards to swaddling my 14 month old? I always said my kids like to be swaddled tight because they were in touch with their ancestral act of being in a papoose. lol

    • Yes, it was in the middle of a conversation with a friend who let me know she never did that with her kids who are now much older.

  5. I didn’t swaddle Peyton because she didn’t like it and we didn’t own any Swaddle Me wraps. I swaddle Megan right now and it is amazing!!! I believe whatever works best for your child is what you should do. I also enjoy the 10+ hours of sleep every night and have since Megan was 8 weeks old.

  6. Emmett seems to have a love/hate relationship with the swaddle. We have a rotation b/t receiving blankets, Aden and Anais guaze swaddlers and the SwaddleMe things. After about 2-3 days, he fights whichever one we are using at that time until he is purple in the face. We change the type of swaddle, and he is good for a few days. Not sure why, but he definitely sleeps better/deeper at night when swaddled than naptime when he isn’t. I am going to look into this Woombie thing. It sounds fantastic!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s