The Best Baby Swaddles, Sleep Sacks and Blankets

Swaddles, sleep sacks and weighted blankets are baby essentials, but if you’re a new parents, there may be some confusion as to what they actually are – so let’s clarify before we dive into the best ones.

What is a swaddle? 

“A swaddle is blanket wrapped snuggly around your baby’s body that can resemble the mother’s womb and help soothe a newborn baby,” says Erin Junker, founder of The Happy Sleep Company. “As a Sleep Consultant, I follow the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The AAP says that when done correctly, swaddling can be an effective technique to help calm infants and promote sleep. The AAP also notes that parents should stop swaddling as soon as their baby shows any signs of trying to roll over.” Rolling over can happen as soon as two months or, if you’re using the Snoo, many parents swaddle till six months.

What is a sleep sack/sleep bag?

“A sleep bag is essentially what you’d get if you combined all the best attributes of a cozy, comfy sleeping bag with a soft and lightweight baby blanket,” says Junker. “It is quite literally a wearable blanket – a sleep bag that baby wears for naps and nights, with a neck hole and arm holes! As a Sleep Consultant, I suggest parents use a sleep bag with proper sleepwear (PJs that aren’t too hot and won’t leave baby too chilly!) until your child transitions out of a crib and into a bed (around 3 years of age),” says Junker. Until then, a sleep bag is an excellent option for a number of reasons:

Safety: “Health experts agree that there should be no loose items in a child’s crib, including blankets. A sleep bag is essentially a wearable blanket, meaning you get all of the warmth and coziness of a blanket, without the safety hazards associated with loose items being in your child’s crib. A proper-fitting sleep bag will ensure your baby’s head cannot slip inside, removing the suffocation hazard associated with blankets that can end up on top of baby’s little mouth and nose.”

Warmth: “Babies move a LOT in their sleep – this means little legs often kick off blankets, leaving your child chilly at night. Sleep sacks stay in place and keep your baby warm the whole night through.”

 Sleep cues: “Babies like to know what’s coming up next, and placing them in a sleep bag for every nap and nighttime sleep can help them understand that they are about to go into their crib for rest!”

What is a weighted kids blanket?

These are designed for children who are typically older (weight around 50lbs or more). “Like adult weighted blankets, kids weighted blankets can be a profound and all-natural tool to help children feel comforted and slip into sleep,” says Elizabeth Grojean, founder of Baloo. “Weighted blankets are a scientifically proven way to calm the nervous system and get better sleep, and these results are no different for kids. For children who have a difficult time falling asleep, staying asleep through the night, or just need the feeling of being cuddled, weighted blankets are a natural solution. We’ve also heard from customers that use weighted blankets when their littles ones are feeling anxious or upset and their Baloo provided them with the gentle, comforted feeling to help them feel relaxed and calm.”

As a general rule of thumb, Jada Shapiro, founder of boober, says that when it comes to baby and toddler sleepwear, parents should choose breathable sleepwear to avoid overheating and choose outfits without bows, buttons or long ties. “Outfits should be snug-fitting, comfortable, and ideally pesticide and flame-retardent free.”
Read on for some of the best baby swaddles, sleep sacks and blankets.

More About Safe Sleep:

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