Weaning off the swaddle

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Alissa_Sal's picture
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Weaning off the swaddle

Are any of you weaning your babies off the swaddle yet? I have been wanting to get Reid into his crib because I am worried that he is going to fall out of the Rock and Play. Probably an irrational fear, but he is doing this thing now where he puts his feet on the bottom and pushes himself up so that his head hits the top. I know that the sides are high and that doesn't mean that he can fall out, but I still worry about it. But then you can't buckle him in when he's swaddled, and I also have to put him to bed fully asleep most of the time still, so I know buckling him in would wake him up. So anyway, I've been thinking I need to get him into his crib.

But then he started rolling. I don't want to put him in the crib swaddled because I'm afraid he'll roll onto his face and not be able to get back over or push himself up because of the swaddle. I will say that the one thing that I like about the Rock and Play is that I think it would be next to impossible for him to roll all of the way over to be face down in it. So anyway, I feel like I have to wean him off of the swaddle before I can put him in his crib. So far I have stopped swaddling his legs and one arm, so he just has it kind of wrapped horizontally around one arm and his chest and belly. It looks like a short toga! Too funny. Last night was the first night with one arm out, and he woke up at 11 which is unheard of and made me think I was in for a bad night, but then he slept until 7. If he sleeps good again tonight, I think tomorrow I'm going to leave it off altogether. It was time anyway - he has been breaking out of it (even the Miracle Blanket!) by the time he wakes up in the morning for a couple of weeks now anyway.

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I seriously almost posted the same thread today. But I swaddle for naps, which I know is frowned upon, but hey if you need your kid to sleep you will do what it takes. So for napping we went from him having to be worn and him only sleeping on my chest, to him having to be rocked to sleep in the swing swaddled, to him being rocked in the rock n play swaddled. Last week, I started putting him in his crib swaddled. He cries a bit but falls asleep shortly after. I want him to start sleeping without the swaddle because I don't think my daycare does it. So yesterday and today, I tried the one arm out method and he could not calm himself down. So I am going to give it another few days.

This was only for naps. He is still in the rock n play for night sleep because he sleeps so dang good in that thing and Dh has had some rough days at work and he needs the sleep and well I like to sleep too, who doesn't? We have been talking about moving him to his room a couple of weeks after I go back to work. His room just feels so far away. And since he wakes up at 3am to nurse, that would be a PITA.

Good luck with leaving it off tomorrow!

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Update: Reid slept the last two nights with both arms and legs unswaddled. I just had the swaddle wrapped around his chest and tummy to make him still feel somewhat swaddled. Today we switched to sleep sacks which is what he will wear until he's old enough for real blankets. In another couple of nights once he is completely used to the sleep sack and no swaddle, I will start trying to get him to sleep in his crib. Baby steps!

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We started with one arm out, then both arms out. I still use the swaddleme blanket just to keep her legs covered, but it's not tight at all. She doesn't sleep longer than 3 hours at night anyway, so I don't think the blanket was doing much anyway. I am thinking of moving her to the crib soon and out of the rock n sleep. I'll probably do that over the course of the next month.

Elizabeth, you might be trying too early. I'd give it until 3 months, then try again. I wouldn't worry too much about what they do at daycare.

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Wow Alissa, you are like the baby whisperer. Good luck with the crib transition.

Yeah Joan, you are right he is not dealing well with not being swaddled. So we are continuing to do it.

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I tried to put her into her crib last night ... and ended up spending two hours awake with her last night. She spends most of her night in bed with me because it's the only way I can get any sleep. She does OK in the rock n play, but would not stay settled in the crib. I've tried a few times to help her learn to fall asleep on her own and they have also been unsuccessful. She's a very happy baby though, so I'll take it, I just have to stick with what works for her because I'm learning that this baby will NOT be changed or manipulated, lol.

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LOL She's strong willed! That's a good thing, just makes it hard on Mommy sometimes.

I haven't started the crib thing yet. I'm thinking maybe on Friday night, that way if he gets up more than usual at least I won't have to be up for work the next morning.

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Julie has been sleeping in her crib since she was six weeks. My back just couldn't handle sleeping with her on the couch and I refuse to let her in the bed. DH moces too much. I also didn't have a rock n play or anything like that. However, I've tried a few times to leave an arm free or her legs out of the swaddle and its a no go. But its coming because just yesterday she was trying to roll. She didn't, but its soon.

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We are still very happy with our swaddleme at night and I use my Aden + Anias blanket to Swaddle his arms in the swing during the day. He sleeps a lot better swaddled and since he usually only takes 30-40 min naps I need as much as I can get.
He's still in the Rock n Play but we moved it into his room a month ago. He usually only wakes up once but lately it's been twice.

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Update: We're making progress, slowly but surely. I laid him down really sleepy in his crib today for his nap, but he started fussing. I have noticed that he has been sucking his thumb a little bit lately, so I popped his thumb in his mouth and he actually went to sleep. Not for long, only maybe 20 minutes, but that's no worse than he was doing in his swaddle in his Rock N Play (he's never been a good napper) so I'm calling it a successful first step.

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Aww I love thumb suckers, I've never had one myself. SO cute!!

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He slept in his crib last night from 8 pm - 6:45 am!!!! Thank goodness! On Saturday night he slept from 8-2 which was great, but then he was up every hour after that. Zzzzzzzz I was exhausted on Sunday. I think he was too. Then yesterday I tried to lay him down in his crib and he started crying and getting really worked up so I basically had to start the whole bedtime unwinding routine over, but after that he went into his crib and like I said, slept peacefully for almost 11 hours straight. Happy Dance!

So I'm going to give him several more days to just get used to the crib, and then I'm going to really start working on getting him to go down sleepy but awake. Here is the plan right now:

1. Move his nursing to earlier in the routine (like nurse, then change his diaper) and see if I can get him to fall asleep sucking his thumb in my arms
2. After he has gotten used to that for a couple of days, hold him while he sucks his thumb until he's pretty sleepy, and then lay him down still sleepy in his crib. Stay with him rubbing his back and head until he falls all of the way asleep.
3. After he has gotten used to that for a couple of days, start staying with him less and less time each day, hopefully ending in me just laying him in his crib, rubbing his back for a few "pats" and then leaving.

Of course, all of that is best case scenario (like what if he refuses to fall asleep sucking his thumb in step 1???) but that's the plan anyway. Wish me luck!

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Wow, you are so organized Alissa! My kid doesn't even sleep in his crib yet and is still totally swaddled and usually nurses to sleep at night.
And WOW! at how much he sleeps! We usually get an 8:30 - 4 stretch on a good night!

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So far what I've learned with Reid is that he does not react well to big changes, so I have to use the Lobster Pot approach (you know, the water keeps changing temp little by little so he doesn't even realize it's getting hotter until he's boiled. LOL) I was kind of just thrashing around trying to make all of these big changes all at once, and surprise surprise, I was making both of us crazy. So now I'm using a much more planned out and strategic approach using a set of small changes, and it seems to be working much better with much less drama.

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Holy smokes Alissa that is awesome!