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Swaddles for 6mo?

(12 Posts)
Pirandello24 Thu 22-Dec-16 21:35:33

Our 6 month old DS has started resting his hands on his chest while sleeping, and then waking up when they slip off. We've never swaddled him but are thinking it might help him keep his arms securely by his side (and hopefully sleep longer). Can anyone recommend a swaddle for older babies, or any other strategies that might be helpful? Thanks.

Bloodybloodyheckers Thu 22-Dec-16 21:37:11

Swaddling is now considered a SIDs risk, I did it with DD1 but didn't know!

How about something like the sleepyhead mattress, is makes them feel a bit more secure and isn't just a flat surface to bang his hands down on. Worked a treat for my non sleeping baby!

FATEdestiny Thu 22-Dec-16 21:45:55

Swaddling is not considered a SIDS risk.

However OP, the Lullaby Trust (who inforinform NHS policy on SIDs) have evidence that a baby who is introduced to swaddling after 12 weeks is at a greater risk.

It is fine to swaddle an older baby, but only if that swaddling starts before the baby is 3 months old.

So in the ops case, not recommended to start swaddling at 6m. How about a tightly tucked in sheet or blanket instead?

FATEdestiny Thu 22-Dec-16 21:46:33

Thundercake Thu 22-Dec-16 22:25:15

I had a baby 6 months ago and was advised that latest research says not to swaddle. I also had a baby two years ago and at that time swaddling was still considered ok so the research must be very new.

That aside, I swaddle my DD if she's all jittery but use a really light (but large) muslin so she won't overheat. Then I feel guilty and loosen it when she's fully asleep.

FATEdestiny Thu 22-Dec-16 22:30:55

Swaddling has been queried as a risk for a long time, many years. That's no different now. HV will have their opinions on it (just like many HV also have opinions on the queried risks of cosleeping).

That doesn't change the published research.

Which is the same as it's always been. Search "Lullaby Trust evidence base" for the more detailed research. If interested.

Pirandello24 Fri 23-Dec-16 02:59:53

Thank you so much for all your replies. DS has been ill for a few weeks and although better now, his sleep in horrendous- waking 10 or 11 times a night. Me and DP are on our knees. In desperation we swaddled him tonight (loosely) with a cellular blanket and it is working amazingly well- fewer wake ups and much easier to resettle. Of course I'm not sleeping though as I'm worried he'll pull the blanket over his face, so am sat up watching the monitor! Now that I've read your replies though am going to try the tucked in sheet and look into the sleepyhead.

Pirandello24 Fri 23-Dec-16 03:09:08

Do you know if the sleeping bag type swaddles carry the same risk? I don't know how to do links on my phone but have seen the Love to Dream swaddles which look like sleeping bags but keep baby's arms by their sides

Thistledew Fri 23-Dec-16 07:40:38

It doesn't really answer your question but maybe something to ponder - DS was swaddled from birth, firstly in a cotton swaddling blanket and then in a swaddle sleeping bag. We stopped swaddling him quite abruptly when he learned at 3 1/2 months to roll from his back to his tummy. I saw him do it whilst in his swaddling bag and realised he would not then be able to push himself back if his arms were by his side. If your DC is rolling this might be something to consider.

Pirandello24 Fri 23-Dec-16 10:01:55

Thanks Thistledew that's a really good point.

FATEdestiny Fri 23-Dec-16 10:47:36

The research doesn't separate the type of swaddle, so it will cover all types of swaddle.

The interesting point I think is that there is no 'you must stop swaddling at this point' advise. In many cultures babies are swaddled right through the whole of this first year and this isn't against recommendations.

However there is really clear and unquestionable data that shows more babies die from SIDS if they start being swaddled after 3months, whereas that risk is not replicated for babies who were used to swaddling from birth.

So there is a definite risk in your case Pirandello24. Having said that, SIDS recommendations are just that - recommendations only. Lots of people know and understand the risks but decide to manage the risks in their own way to suit their own situation.

Lots of people don't follow the recommendations exactly on every point. But I feel if you aregoing to do that, you need to be able to make an informed decision based on properly understanding the nature of the risks involved. The Lullaby Trust Evidence Base is really excellent for this.

Pirandello24 Sat 24-Dec-16 13:50:27

Thanks so much for the info FATE. DP and I talked about this last night and decided we would continue with swaddling. I feel very anxious about the increased SIDS risk but we really cannot carry on like this (10 plus wakings a night), we are on our knees with exhaustion. Last night we swaddled and DS woke 6 times- I know this probably sounds awful to some people but for us it was amazing. There was even a 3 hour gap between wakings at one point.

We know that the bigger issue is that DS seems to have lost the ability to self settle like he used to. We have always fed/ rocked him to sleep and this seemed to work fine, he could always put himself back to sleep when he woke. But now every time he wakes he cries and most of the time needs us to soothe him in some way. Sometimes just with hand holding but often by being picked up. And putting him in the cot awake at the start of the night makes him cry immediately. We know we need to get to the point where we are putting him down awake but the thought of doing any sleep training when we are feeling like this just seems impossible. So we are hoping that the swaddle will get him to a point where he is doing 3/4 wake ups and we feel strong enough to tackle the root issues. I have no idea if this will work (or if it makes any sense!) but that's the best plan we've got right now. Any other tips/ advice is most definitely welcome!

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