The first benefit of swaddling is its potential to lower SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) because swaddling helps infants sleep in the supine position. But, the benefits don’t stop there. Moms already witness the 2nd benefit when they first held their swaddle baby.
As I rewind thru the video of my son’s birth, it’s easy to see he was shocked and uncomfortable coming into the world. He was screaming his lungs out and did not stop at all as the doctors examined him. His crying subsided only after he was swaddle.
The newborn has lived in the mother’s womb for almost 9 months (my stayed in there for only 34 weeks, 6 days) and has developed a comfort level. It does not cry or shed any tears in the womb because it’s protected in its very own Garden of Eden.
The act of swaddling will help the infant re-create this awesome time in his life. Where he knows he has nothing to worry about. In the womb, he is feed, kept warm, and shielded by the mom. A swaddle blanket will hope to solve two of those fears.
First, newborns’ are not use to the cold environment when they enter the world. The body temperature averages 37 degrees Celsius and he comes into a world that averages 23 degrees Celcius. Additionally, newborns typically don’t have much body fat for insulation and this is especially true for premature babies. A tight swaddle around the baby will help insult the baby and keep him warm as he enters a cold world.
Second, the swaddle blanket will act like a shield to help reduce unfamiliar hands from roughing him up. He will not likely be pinch or feel too much pressure against his soft and vulnerable body. The protection continues as the swaddle blanket will help keep bacteria away from the body. At this time, people might come and visit the newly delivered baby. Having him wrapped in a clean blanket will help keep bacteria off his skin. The swaddle blanket then should be routinely swapped out and clean to reduce the likelihood of germs building up.
The most noticeable benefit for parents is seeing the baby cry less when he is swaddle. As the environment of the womb is re-created, the baby will remember the good times and will calm down from their agitated states.
Give swaddling a try if you haven’t already because the rewards and benefits are there for infants and parents who try.