Swaddling or wrapping a newborn baby can help settle him because he feels warm and secure. Also babies have a tendency to wave their hands about and sometimes to scratch their faces which can wake them up. A large muslin or a specially shaped swaddling blanket can be used. However, an orthopaedic surgeon at Southampton general hospital has warned that the practice of swaddling is causing a rising number of cases of hip dysplasia. An infants natural hip position is ‘frog style’ with legs drawn up and thighs roughly at right angles to the  body. This helps the ball and socket joint develop properly in the hip. Babies’ hip joints are loosened by hormones released by the mother during labour to ease their birth. Tight swaddling forcibly straightens a baby’s legs, leaving it unable to flex and strengthen its weakened joints. For this reason it is advisable to use a specially shaped swaddle called a sleepsack swaddle which leaves the baby’s legs just loosely covered. These can be bought from the Gro Store or from Halo.

Stop swaddling at about four weeks old. Never place a baby on its stomach when swaddled.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s