Babies: 3 - 6 Months

How to stop swaddling

Question on how to stop swaddling. DD is 4 months and 2 weeks and we have swaddled every night since birth. My pedi told me in the next month I will need to stop. Just wondering if I should wean her my doing one arm in and one arm out? Or just stop cold turkey? TIA!

Re: How to stop swaddling

  • image Kemare20:

    How well does your LO do with change?

    I tried cold turkey with my LO and it was the worst 2 nights of my life. There was no way I was doing a 3rd night. We did the one arm at a time thing. It took about 3-4 weeks (we went really slow! He did great!) and now we just swaddle from the armpits down.

    My LO doesn't do well with change though- so I should have known the cold turkey thing would not go over well :)

    I should have done that. We went cold turkey and it was a really rough two or more weeks before she improved. Now we are moving out of the  bassinet to the crib and again we aren't sleeping. I'm so tired.  


  • Great now I'm nervous lol.. Ok ill start weaning this week I suppose. Thanks again!
  • We did cold turkey with no problem, but she's an easy going baby.
    Baby girl was born 9/18/12.
    8 lbs 10 oz, 21 inches
  • I've just started the weaning process, and I plan to take my time with it (LO is 10 weeks tomorrow). I'm doing one arm out during a couple naps (not her long afternoon one), and when she has the hang of one arm out, we'll move to two and then to night time sleep. I'm just not willing to have horrendous nights/weeks going cold turkey.
  • this isn't help...but just a warning...for my lo naps are different and separate then nighttime. she's been unswaddled for naps for Weeks just fine....but at night its a disaster every time we try to do unswaddled.....I need to try again its been a week or so...
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  • Luckily I quit swaddling for naps when she was 3 weeks old. So I know she can sleep not swaddled. She has just been the best sleeper since she was 7 weeks that I'm nervous to mess with it but I know I have to. Ill look into the sleep suit thing.
  • Can you start using a sleep sack?  I just started using the Halo sleep sack this weekend and my LO seems to be liking it so far- crossing my fingers!  You can swaddle with arms inside or outside.
  • I tranditioned dd into a wearable blanket not as snug as swaddle but she didn't feel so out in the open

  • We weaned gradually: one arm out, then both with his belly still wrapped, then a Halo SleepSack.  I found the sleepsack to be a great transition because it provided some snugness and confinement and is a safe way to sleep rather than using a loose blanket. 
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  • I have heard that the "magic sleepsuit" is a good transition from swaddling.  Apparently it keeps your baby from being able to move her arms as quickly and therefore reduces startling awake.  I haven't tried it yet (still swaddling at 4 months) but plan on using it based on the rave reviews of a friend.

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  • She was starting to get her arms free every night (we weren't worried about strangulation because the swaddle stayed velcroed). She was still sleeping through the night when this was happening so we went cold turkey. 

    I will say that the first 2 times we tried to let her sleep unswaddled, she woke up immediately/within 15 minutes being put down. We took this as she wasn't ready and went back to swaddling for a week before we attempted again. We tried this first during nap times. Trust me, start with the nap times, that way you aren't a zombie if your baby isn't ready yet. 

    A lot of babies take being swaddled as a cue to sleep is coming. If you follow other bedtime rituals, you can replace this one with something else. We just replaced being swaddled with a short massage and being put into a wearable blanket.  

    The first two nights, she woke up once and needed to be soothed back down. I'm unsure of this was her 4-month-wakeful spell or adjusting to change. Either way, those two nights were a little rough, but since she has been sleeping very well - going down around 7 and sleeping through until 7.  


    If your baby is ready to sleep unswaddled, then you should be able to just stop swaddling. 




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