The Swaddle Battle

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eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2440
The Swaddle Battle

So lately, every night when I go to swaddle Henry, he fights it. His arms are at his face by the time I'm done swaddling, I have to do it several times very quick before he gets his arms up. He's so strong. We tried tonight to just leave his arms out since he was struggling to get them out anyway. It took him forever to go to sleep and his startle reflex woke him up twice in one hour. So frustrating. He can't be swaddled and can't not be swaddled. What's a mom to do? I own Aden&Anais blankets, swaddlemes and a halo. I'm about to get a transition swaddler thingy...either a swaddle strap (which is what they use at daycare) or a zipadeezip.

Or should I leave his arms out and deal with him waking often for awhile? Will the startle reflex go away faster if I stop swaddling sooner? Like will he learn to self soothe eventually? Or is the reflex there until a certain age?

nidia's picture
Joined: 06/08/07
Posts: 1812

I don't know what to say bc Lucas has been getting his arms out of the swaddle too, lol. I told my DH maybe he's just growing out of it but for now we will swaddle him until we just can't anymore. Last night he actually pulled his arms out but he slept from 9-4:30. BUT he was super tired bc he hadn't slept much at all during the day.

I need to check out those zipadeezips!

AimeeS1911's picture
Joined: 02/01/12
Posts: 636

We go throught the same thing and she usually busts out. My issue on her is that she rolls to her belly and she sleeps that way but then after a couple hours she wants the bink or wants to be on her back and can't so she cries. I feel like the startle def dies down but I have no recollection of when. I hate it. I just wish she didn't wake for theo ne feeding. if she eats great she wakes and sometiems doesn't there is no rhyme or reason.

Alissa_Sal's picture
Joined: 06/29/06
Posts: 6427

I've read that if your baby keeps breaking out of the swaddle it may help to swaddle without the legs because a lot of times they are kicking their legs which then loosens the whole thing up enough so they can get their arms out, and they don't need their legs swaddled to prevent startling. Also, that's how I started weaning Reid off his swaddle if that is your goal. First a couple of days without the legs, then a couple of days with only one arm swaddled, then a couple of days with just his chest/tummy "swaddled" and then no swaddle at all. He was still in his Rock N Play where he couldn't move around too much though. Not sure I would be comfortable leaving Henry with a blanket wrapped around his middle in a crib where he could move more and potentially work it up around his face.

eliann's picture
Joined: 04/19/11
Posts: 2440

Yeah no rhyme or reason for him waking here either. Even if he has eaten a lot that day he will still wake every 2 hour sometimes. Like last night. He only slept 1 hour and 15 minutes total at daycare yesterday and then woke every 2 hours last night. He's an insomniac like me.

Alissa it sort of worries me, but not really. The swaddleme and halos usually end up underneath his armpits once his arms are out. I don't think the swaddlemes are big enough to go over his head either. And I don't use the Aden and Anais ones at night. But now I'm a bit worried since you brought it up. I don't really swaddle his legs besides them being in the swaddleme or halo sack. They are loose around his legs. I think if I left the "foot sack" part out, I would be even more worried about SIDS. At 2 or 4am I usually bring him back in our room to the rock n play. But its much easier to put him in his crib at the beginning of the night because we need our room to fold laundry, etc.

crazy j's picture
Joined: 10/08/07
Posts: 1162

I was going to suggest trying one arm out and see if he sleeps well like that.