How Long Did You Swaddle Your Infant? Also, Baby Won't Take Pacifier...

Updated on March 07, 2008
M.G. asks from Saint Paul, MN
42 answers

My baby girl is turning 3 months on Monday - I have heard that by now we shouldn't be swaddling her anymore. She will ONLY sleep if she is wrapped up really really tight. If not, she can fall asleep but will wake up soon after drifting off and wake often during the night because her hands are free to roam up by her face --she gets frustrated & all worked up because she starts sucking on her fists. Any advice? She won't for the life of me take a pacifier because the hospital started us on giving her our pinkie finger to suck on & that is all she'll take to calm down & fall asleep (we started that at the hospital staff's advice because they said & I read nuks weren't recommended for breastfed babies -- but she is now on formula - the super expensive hypoallergenic kind -that's another story).

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A.B.

answers from Waterloo on

We swaddled until my son was about 8 months old. I learned in another mom group I was a part of that you could duck tape the outside of the swaddle to help keep them in it. It worked wonders for my son. I know if sounds crazy and my husband thought I was, but when we were able to sleep through the night again, it was worth it.

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M.M.

answers from Milwaukee on

I swaddled my daughter until she started kicking out of the miracle blanket. Around 3 months she started getting free of the blanket. Then I would just wrap her up in the blanket tightly but not swaddled. This seemed to work out fine.

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R.K.

answers from Minneapolis on

I swaddled my daughter until she was about 8 months old... She just wouldn't sleep if I didn't. I first used the Halo Sleepsack/Swaddler combo, then she got too big for the sleepsack, so I just used the velcro swaddler from it and used it over her pajamas. Then I eventually bought a big kids swaddler when she got too big for that (The big one was from snugandtug.com and it worked amazing... They also have small ones - super snug and nice for baby). The velcro ones are the safest, because they can't get them off and keeps them wrapped tight - no worries of covering their face somehow. Also, as for the hip issues with swaddling too long, I would just swaddle her top half. I always let my daughters legs be free, and the swaddlers I recommended allow for that.

As for the binky... I would recommend trying a variety of binkys until she finds one she likes. Ortho nipples, straight nipples, ones that sit away from her face (Avent, etc), ones that sit up close to her face (MAM, etc).

I hope this helps... Good luck!

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B.B.

answers from Madison on

You know one thing you hear a ton with your first child? You should(n't) do this. Know what I've learned after being a mom for 2+ years and childcare provider for over 15? You know your child better than anyone else and if it feels right, works then do it. No 2 kids are alike and to be honest sometimes your going to get plain wrong advice. Trust your mothering instinct.

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C.B.

answers from Minneapolis on

M.,

Babies do not need to suck on plastic. If she doesn't want a pacifier, don't give it to here. This is the least of the things a new mom needs to worry about. Listen to your baby. She knows what she needs more than anyone. If she wants to be swaddled, do it. She is trying to tell you what she needs. Listen and I think you will be glad you did.

Good luck

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T.H.

answers from Rochester on

Hi M., Swaddle her as long as she needs!!! She loves it, it comforts her and you will get more sleep! My son was about 6 months old before we quit swaddling him...actually both of my boys loved being swaddled! Just think, they spent 9 months in the womb in a little ball so being swaddled gives them that sense of security back! It doesn't hurt them in any way to swaddle them so why not get back a little sanity and sleep! Ha! Can't help you in the pacifier category...both my boys used one. Swaddling = Happy Baby & Happy Mommy!

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S.I.

answers from Minneapolis on

Our daughter didn't like pacifiers until she was about 8 months old. I was pretty happy about that. Her dad would give her fingers until she got teeth. I'd say just be happy she doesn't want a pacifier. And my understanding is that pacifier policy has nothing to do with how babies are fed but partly because they get hooked on them and can end up with issues - speech ones or not giving them up and having oral issues.

For swaddling - if she'll let you do it, go ahead. I think it's more that around that age they get too active and won't say in the blanket (our baby liked having her hands and feet free) but we have friends who had to wrap longer.

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A.V.

answers from Minneapolis on

I swaddled my daughter until she was 6 mths old. We used the Miracle Blanket recommended by our dr. It worked great for us. When you do end up breaking her of the swaddling - do it cold turkey - little by little won't work. It's very hard in the beginning but she's almost a year now and sleeps great!! It's not a bad thing that she still wants to be swaddled. If you're worried about her getting too warm. Either just maybe put her in a onesie or in the summer we just put her in her diaper. You can go onto www.miracleblanket.com and see what the blanket is all about. Good luck w/everything. My daugher also wouldn't take a paci for the 1st few months. Now I think she uses it too much!!

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A.J.

answers from Fargo on

Our daughter would only sleep well when swaddled tightly too, and we asked our doctor when to stop. She said that our daughter would let us know. She said if swaddling works for them to keep doing it as long as they like it. Our daughter is 3.5mos and just started kicking out of the swaddle on her own at about 2.5mos. Then we started using the sleep sack, and she still sleeps all night with that. I think she needs to feel cozy. I don't have any advice on the paci. Our daughter uses it almost every time she naps or goes down for the night. We used the pinky for about the first 3wks, but then she started with the paci. Good Luck.

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M.H.

answers from Minneapolis on

We swaddled my first son for a looooong time. He wouldn't sleep unless he was swaddled. Probably until he was at least 6 months old (he was a preemie, though, so I don't know if that made a difference). We didn't swaddle my youngest son for very long because he could get out of it sooner than his brother.

As far as the pacifier goes my oldest couldn't suck hard enough to keep one in his mouth until he was a few months old, don't remember exactly. My youngest started taking one around 3 months and it took many tries to find one he would actually take (eventually he settled on MAM).

Go with your gut on the swaddling and try a few different pacifiers if you haven't already. The Soothie pacifier is the closest to a pinkie if you haven't tried that one already.

Good luck!

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J.G.

answers from Milwaukee on

Hi M.,

Every child is special and unique in it's own.

Trust your instincts. The one thing I learned about being a mom is to trust what your baby is sharing with you. If swaddling is what comforts her and it's not hurting anything, keep swaddling. She'll let you know when it's not doing the trick anymore. My mom had 2 sets of twins and two singles. She had 5 kids in 4 years. My twin & I were the oldest. I asked my mom a lot of questions when my babies were little.
She was my life line!

If you are looking to earn money from home, please check out our website: http://yourchoice.momsmakemore.com.

We would love to show you how to stay at home with your daughter and create an income bigger than your hubby's!! Ha!
It beats paying childcare prices today. And we have fun!!!

To your success!

J.

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B.Y.

answers from Lincoln on

Girl please, I made burrito babies until they were old enough to walk! lol jk, but I agree with the other mom, each child is different and whatever works for them is best. If she wants to be wrapped then wrap her, trust me you'll be wishing she would still like that when she's a lot more mobile.
As for the pacifier, I was always told NOT to use your finger, for the sanitation factor. I mean granted I'm sure you always clean your hands when you offer her your pinkie, but if you do take her to daycare, then how will others soothe her? I don't think I'd be comfortable with someone else offering their pinkie to my baby. And as for the type of nuk it really depends on the baby. My daughter had about 15 different pacifiers but there was only one kind she would accept, and she still nursed plenty. So like I said earlier each baby is different and will prefer different things.
And as for daycare, scout out the nearby places and get tours, meet the teachers, and take your daughter and see which place meshes well with her and makes you feel most comfortable. Then maybe start taking her in for an hour or two now and then so you can slowly adjust to the idea of her being at a daycare. It took us about 8 places until both my husband and I felt comfortable with our daycare now. But our kids are happy and so are we. Good luck with everything and I hope my rambling info has helped!

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K.H.

answers from Sioux City on

We continue to swaddle our 4 month old. We bought Harvey Karp's "The happiest baby on the block" when our son wouldn't sleep for more than 2 hours at night at almost 2 months of age. He states that some babies like to be swaddle up to 8 months or more. There is nothing wrong with everyone getting a little sleep!! Some just like to be tucked in a little more.

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M.P.

answers from Minneapolis on

Hi! I would just keep swaddling her until she no longer needs it to calm her or until she starts unwrapping herself. I swaddled both my kids until they were around 6 months, the Dr. knew & never said it was "wrong". If she wants to move, then she will wiggle her arms free- it won't hurt her.

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K.S.

answers from Minneapolis on

We swaddled our son until he was 8...almost 9 months old! He's big so I had my mom make bigger blankets for him. Dr. Karp's the Happiest Baby on the Block COMPLETELY worked for us. We followed his swaddling technique and our son never managed to get out. When I finally "weaned" him off of swaddling, I took one arm out first, then the second. He is now 2 1/2 and is perfectly fine for the long swaddling. In the summer I had him only in a onesie, swaddled with a light blanket. You just don't want to overheat them. Do what works for you and your child. You'll find there are a million opinions out there, and usually YOU really know what's best for your child.

As for the pacifier...there are a number of babies who never take them, even given the chance right away. My son loved his, and it was awful when he would lose it at night. He never used it again after he was able to suck his thumb. Not sure I like that...but it is always there and ready!

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J.

answers from Minneapolis on

We swaddled our son until 6 months. At that point he was interested in sleeping unswaddled. When we tried before that point he would take longer to go to sleep and wake up during the night.

Also, as a clue to see if he was ready we started at naptimes gradually unswaddling. Example: for a few weeks he took a nap with one arm unswaddled. When that went well we did it at night. Then he had both arms unswaddled, but the blanket was still around his stomach and legs. We definitely thought that was easier than going cold turkey.

Just a thought.
-J.

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B.J.

answers from Milwaukee on

I would continue to swaddle your daughter as long as she needs it. Babies hit milestones at all different times, and it seems like yours needs and wants to continue to be swaddled. My neighbor just dealt with this and her daughter is five months. The doctor said to stop swaddling, the baby was a mess and would not nap, so back on the swaddles went and she is happy once again. You know your baby best, do what is best for your daughter and you!!!! :)

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J.H.

answers from Minneapolis on

I don't see any problem with you continuing to swaddle your infant as long as she's free to move around during the day. If that's what makes her comfortable, go for it. As far as the pacifier goes, try different brands. Maybe she'll find one that she likes! My daughter did take a pacifier until she was around 5 months though (don't know why she suddenly took one at 5 months!). She only takes the Nuk brand. We tried other brands but that's the only one she would take. She too was a breastfed baby.

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D.T.

answers from St. Cloud on

Hi M.,
I can't help you much with the swaddling part because my daughter didn't like having her arms wrapped in her blanket. She would wake up if her arms WEREN'T above her head. About the pacifier, we waited until our daughter was 3-4 weeks old to give her a pacifier. She took it most of the time until she was about 3-3 1/2 months old. Now it's very rare if she will take one at all. She is able to calm herself by sucking on her own fingers (or sometimes thumb). If your little one is used to sucking on your pinky, maybe help her find her own hand to her mouth? It's just a thought. Breastfed babies (even if she isn't anymore) tend to prefer the feeling of actual skin/flesh because that's what they had when they were breastfeeding. And as far as being nervous about possibly having to put her in daycare in the future, I will try to help you with any questions/concerns etc if needed. I have been able to stay at home with my 5 month old because of a layoff at my job. But then decided it would be best for our family if I got licensed and did daycare in our home. I am in the process of getting licensed and will have my license within about a week from now. Let me know if you have any questions, etc. I'd be happy to help.
D.

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L.T.

answers from Minneapolis on

Swaddling is fine at night if she still needs it. My second child was a preemie and we swaddled her until she was over 6 months old because it just helped her sleep and feel safe. Why fight it? You know her best and you'll take care of her better than anyone else.

As for the pacifier, I think it's too late now to introduce it to her, but then again my kids went to the bottle from the breast at later ages and took to it fine (so much for the experts who say they won't). Every child is unique and you will find what works best for Natalie. Trust yourself.

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C.L.

answers from Minneapolis on

I don't know anything about the swaddling, but neither one of my two boys ever took a pacifier. Some babies just don't like them. It was annoying when they were colicky, fussy infants and I wanted something to comfort them, but I was thankful later when I never had to wean them off of the pacifier or battle with taking it away. You may be appreciative in the long run that she doesn't like the pacifier! Good luck.

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J.M.

answers from Minneapolis on

My little girls also loved to be swaddled-TIGHT! We did it for as long as she wanted to and I don't even remember how long that was (she's 2 1/2 now.). She wouldn't sleep unless she was tucked in tight like a sardine! I wouldn't worry. :)

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A.D.

answers from Minneapolis on

I don't have any advice on the swaddling thing-I wish my kids (3.5, 2, 3months)liked to be swaddled. If your daughter is sleeping well when swaddled I would just keep doing that until she doesn't like to be swaddled anymore-she'll tell you! Getting a good nights sleep is the best thing for her.

I have a lot of experience with the pinky sucking. My now 2 yr old daughter would only suck our fingers (usually only mine) for her first six months. If you haven't already keep trying differnt styles of pacifiers. She might have a shape preference. Then just keep offering the pacifier before you give her your finger. She'll get mad for sure but keep trying with the pacifier for a min or so (until you can't handle the screams any more). Our daughter would take the pacifier for a few mins at a time and then a little longer...ect until she was finally "weaned" off our fingers. It took months of frustration but using a pacifier is so much easier (and cleaner) than a finger.

Now that she's two we have to try to wean off that-yikes!
Good luck!

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C.C.

answers from Madison on

I am a mom of 3 2 girls 4, 3 and a boy 13 months. We stopped swaddling our kids after the first few weeks to a month. We bought those little fleece bag sleepers. Then we rolled up a couple receiving blankets and placed them snuggly up on either side of the baby so they felt like they were swaddled. They were fine and slept great.

Hope this might help.

-Amanda

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J.M.

answers from Appleton on

I swaddled my daughter for as long as I could. She also would not sleep unless she was wrapped up really tight. I finally stopped when she could get out of the blanket herself and when it was more frustrating than comforting for her to be swaddled. I don't think there are any rules on how long is appropriate to swaddle your child. If she is comforted by it and sleeps better being swaddled than do it. My daughter never took a pacifier either and I am happy for that. Try putting your daughters finger in her mouth. My daughter never took a pacifier and never sucker her thumb either so I don't really know how to help you there.

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K.B.

answers from Rochester on

Hi M. - we had the same problem with our now 5 month old son. We stopped swaddling at 3 months because he was just getting too big and felt he needed to build his arm muscles anyway. We had a tough 2 months of putting off the inevitable. We finally put his bouncy seat in his crib and always NEEDED the pacifier and he slept in that for about 1.5 months until he got too big. But we were at a loss at what to do when he needed to sleep in his crib. Our friends were over one night and bless their hearts, they held our hands as we began the Cry it out method. I can't tell you how much better his sleep is now. It was not that easy the first week but gradually it has gotten better and he actually just woke from 11 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Not even a night feeding - which we still are doing. He is able to roll onto his tummy now and he sleeps like a dream when he does. He is much happier during the day and he is even finally taking wonderful naps. Just when I thought I would have a total breakdown - everything seemed to fall into place. The biggest thing I have found is the calming routine EVERY TIME before laying him down. I take him in his room and dim the lights - I put on his lullaby cd - I change his diaper and then massage his legs with lotion. THen I hold him in my arms for one full song - then I put on his white noise and give him a kiss - tell him how much I love him and then lay him down and walk out of the room. Naps have taken about 5 min before he falls asleep and night time is about 20 minutes. He doesn't always cry either. Sometimes he just rolls around and talks and then drifts off. I wish we had done it earlier!! Good luck. I am a stay at home Mom as well - email if you would like to chat - [email protected]____.com

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A.F.

answers from Minneapolis on

never swaddled.

if she won't use the pacifier, that is a good thing. not a bad thing.

she's also acclimating from your breast to a bottle. wonder if maybe the fist sucking will disappear on its own.

the only time my daughter sucked her fist was when she was hungry. But she also had colic so it may have just been that.

I ended up having to feed her beef formula. Don't know if they even make it anymore (32 yrs ago). talk about gross! beef hearts and water. the cats loved it. it stained all of her clothes. and i had the only baby on earth that people recoiled from if i offered her for them to hold ... smelly!

good luck on your little one. and don't sweat the small stuff.

your baby will let you know if the daycare is good or bad. if she crys when you take her there, find another one. or at least do a spot check unannounced. i had that as a general rule whenever i had a babysitter for my daughter (l learned the hard way). Trust your instincts, but like Reagan said long ago ( i cannot believe i am quoting REAGAN, yuck!) "trust but verify."

if the daycare is a good one, she will be happy to be going there, and either ignore you or not want to leave when you come to get her. ... ok, not at 3 months, but down the road. In the meantime, do not hesitate to make a surprise visit, just to check things out. see if her diaper has been changed, what's going on. that should help reassure you that she is being cared for well.

and a happy mom is essential to having a happy baby!

A.

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J.G.

answers from Madison on

Hi M.!
Well, as one mom says below, you know your child best and should follow your instincts. I get tired of attitudes toward babies that suggest they are homogenous and all have the same needs or *should* behave a certain way. Adults don't, so why should babies? Some of us doodle, bite our nails, chew on pins, etc. when nervous or fidgety--what if someone tied our hands b/c it was best for us? I have certain destressing strategies I employ when I need a break--everyone else does too, and so does your baby. If your child needs extra security on her limbs for now or has a high sucking need, try to help her satisfy it and she'll be better off for it. I don't recommend trying to fight her natural instincts. And as another mom suggests below, keep the long-term perspective--I know a speech therapist who let her son have a pacifier until he was 3-4 yrs old, and guess what? He's a perfectly normal 8-yr-old now! Some kids will have crooked teeth no matter what. Some kids w/pacifiers talk early, some not at all, and the same w/non-pacifier kids. Bottom line is, try to be sensitive to your child and understand her needs and don't let the opinions of others keep you from doing what you think is right. Parenting is a high stakes game, and everyone has an opinion--some based on knowledge, some based on experience, most based on cultural attitudes.

As for the swaddling--it does seem to be recent medical opinion that tight swaddling can affect a baby's hip development during its most formative time (i.e. early on)--that's why it isn't recommended any more. (See the Sears' "The Baby Book" for a discussion and for an excellent resource in general; though it does have a clear parenting approach, you can still find the book useful if you don't agree w/it.) If your child needs extra security at this point, try to find ways to give it to her that don't involve binding her legs. Maybe you could wrap her arms tightly but leave her legs looser--like just wrap them. Or as another parent suggested, maybe you can find a weighted blanket/sac or something of that sort to safely give her the pressure she needs but not the hip binding. Finally, you could also try really tight pajamas.

As for the pacifier--some children just have high sucking needs, and some kids don't take pacifiers. I knew a lactation consultant who was going through 7 nipples trying to help a dad find one the baby would take on a bottle b/c the mom was going back to work! If your daughter takes a bottle nipple, then she will probably take a pacifier if you keep working and find the right one. If you feel she needs the sucking input, then I don't see a reason to refuse to meet that need. You'll get a LOT OF FLACK for it--everything will be blamed on the pacifier, but if you feel she needs it, then go w/your instinct and deal w/getting her off it at a time you can substitute something else like a chewing toy, etc., or when you can reason w/her about it. You might try giving her the pacifier at times when she's falling asleep--like do a quick switch from a bottle/your finger to the pacifier--so she begins to associate it w/comfort. (Gently push her chin up to close on the pacifier if she doesn't firmly take it, but don't fight her if she gets aggressive.) Or try to get her to take it while you cuddle her to your breast, again as a way of making it a positive association.

My son weaned himself from pacifiers at 15 mos. and nursed until 2 years, but he still has a strong chewing/sucking need (at 5 1/2 years), so we keep gum on hand. My daughter (20 mos. and nursing) still needs her pacifier for stressful situations or when she feels bad, but otherwise she's fine. It's different w/each kid.

If she's trying to suck her fists, do you think you could help her find her thumb as a way of comforting herself and eliminating the pacifier need? If she has a pacifier while sleeping, do you think she won't get so anxious when not swaddled?

Some kids are sensitive and have higher needs or more sensitive personalities. Many grow out of these issues as they develop. Others continue to have them and they indicate other concerns. It pays to be attentive and know your child and respect their individual needs.

This is just the first of many such decisions you will face, so have confidence in your mothering, follow your instincts, and find a good baby reference!
Best, J.

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M.K.

answers from Minneapolis on

We swaddled our daughter every night for many months. My husband would prepare "the baby burrito" for bed. She loved the feeling of being swaddled and slept well because of it. Swaddle her as long as she wants you too!

As for the binky, I would try every brand possible. She may never take one, but I would definitely keep trying.

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K.B.

answers from Minneapolis on

My daughter is 4 months old and we still swaddle her at night. I don't swaddle her for nap and she does seem to wake up a few times and than go back to sleep. She thinks it funny when she gets a hand out. When we go into her room in the morning we open the swaddle and she stretches and smiles...it is so fun. I am going to keep swaddling her until she doesn't fit in the swaddling sack.

As far as the pacifier/pinky, I would try out a few different pacifiers. My kids usually had the NUK brand, my son also had the MAM ones, he wasn't picky. We had a friend of ours that also used their finger and they were the first people we had ever seen do that. I didn't think it was sanitary to keep putting your finger in the mouth when ever the child was fussy. We had all gotten together for New Years Eve and their son was crying, and they were putting their finger in his mouth and it didn't help. My husband offered to take him and he held him in close to him and did the "bounce and sway" and he fell right to sleep - it was funny.

Good Luck and I am sure with the advice from everyone things will get better from here!!!

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V.S.

answers from Lincoln on

Morning M.,
I breast/bottle fed my boys. I did use the nuke nipple when (they-hubby and son) was bottle feeding. I rocked my babies to sleep evernight. What I found to be the most helpful in my busy life. Was a "SLING" you can purchase one from your breastfeeding group. such as Milkworks, Laleach, etc... It has padded shoulders for you, and where baby is . Is padded for neck, and legs. It also servers at a blanket when napping. Can use this untill 5-6- years old. It's also machine washable, and NO DRYER!! Hope this is of some help. Babies love it. They are close to you, yet snuggly-buggly!!!
V.

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D.T.

answers from Milwaukee on

We still swaddle our 6mo old girl. She has been sleeping though the night with feedings since 6 or 7wks with swaddling(the mircle blanket is great)and sleeping through the night now with no feedings since 5 months. She sleeps 11 to 12 hours uninterupped. Our doctor told us there is nothing wrong with swaddling she obviously likes it and it works for her. She will wiggle herself out of it eventually and out grow of it, but to let her do that on her own. She now is 6 1/2 months and is starting to wiggle out in the night a bit but she doesn't wake up. She also started napping without being swaddled about at 4 1/2 months or so and is able to put herself to sleep. Everyone is different, but for us I really think it was the key for good sleeping for her. We stopped swaddling when we got home from the hospital and started trying it again at the 6 week mark because she would wake herself up if we weren't holding her, and swaddling I guess simulated that and kept her from that startle reflex. I hope this helps. As far as a nuk we used one after she was breatfeeding well. Breastfed 8wks then switched to formula.

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C.M.

answers from Milwaukee on

She is probably getting big for swaddling, but if it still works for her keep doing it! You are not harming her by swaddling her. Go with your instinct on some of these things. As for trying a pacifier, try giving it to her before you lay her down, or when she is in her car seat so she can get used to it. If she falls asleep with it, you might have an easier time. Or, try helping her find her thumb or fingers. She's not very coordinated right now, so the pacifier might work better. Try different shapes as well - babies seem to have preferences.

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K.H.

answers from Des Moines on

Hi M. - our little one was exactly the same way. She slept swaddled until 4mo and then I think she only stopped (slowly mind you - starting with just her arms out) because daycare couldn't/wouldn't swaddle her at each naptime. I have heard of kids being swaddled up to 10mo with no ill effects (I asked my Ped). But I think you'll find once your little one starts to gain control of her arms and legs she won't need or want the swaddle anymore. For now - don't sweat it! ;)

As for the paci - count your blessings. We started the exact same way - using my pinky and that is all Cora would take. Once she started daycare they got her on the paci since that was the only option. Now she's SUPER paci dependant. I have a friend who's son never used a paci and just learned to suck on his fingers for comfort - he sleeps through the night and we have only recently (9mo) gotten Cora to stop waking up multiple times a night for her paci when it falls out.

(oh and our little one is on Nutramagin too - I feel your pain!)

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E.B.

answers from Minneapolis on

As for the swaddling, if she is comfortable swaddle her my son NEVER liked being swaddled even when really little(less than a month), the not wanting a paci just keep trying different ones till you find one that works, when my son was born he had to go to the nicu and they gave him one that smelled like vanilla and was light green, I dont know what brand it is but it might not hurt to go to the hospital and ask about it, that was the only paci my son would take for the short time he did need it.

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M.A.

answers from Minneapolis on

I had the same issue with my first son. The only way he would sleep was if he was tightly swaddled. We swaddled him until he was at least 6 months old. I would say swaddle her until she won't let you anymore! I can't think of any medical reason why you shouldn't.
Also neither one of my sons would take a nuk. My younger one (6mo), who refuses to be swaddled, has just started to take one if I put it in his hand but then just chews on the side. Watching other moms trying to wean their kids off the nuks makes me happy that I won't have to deal with that. : )

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M.C.

answers from Minneapolis on

For us we only swaddled in the hospital for the first maybe second day. We offered the finger too in the hospital. They were worried about nipple confusion if we offered a paci.
My kids are not paci users and I just offered them my breasts when the fist sucking happened or if they were really cranky. Now at 3 and 1 I'll see them sucking on a paci here and there. I don't know why I even have them.

It sounds like you have to break the habit of swaddled during bed time. I'm not sure what the best way is for that. Cold Turkey or gradually.

Good luck on your daycare search/job search too. I'll be staying home soon with my girls and I know how you feel about returning to work after being home. If you need help in the daycare search let me know.

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M.B.

answers from Sioux Falls on

The "do's & don'ts" seem to change from generation to generation, but the basic advice is fairly constant: You know your child better than the "pro's", so do what you feel is best!
All of my children are now grown (my "baby" will graduate high school in 12 weeks!) but I don't recall that swaddling was ever bad. How is that different than tucking your kids into bed like a burrito? (Still MY favorite way to sleep!)
I doubt that will change your daughter's development. We all want our children to learn to comfort and calm themselves. None of my kids had a binkie, and turned out okay. Only one sucked her thumb and that wasn't the end of the world, either.
Some of my grandchildren sucked on their parent's pinkie, but learned to accept either the binkie or their own little fingers.
As young as your daughter is, YOU get to make the choices as to what is best. Take a look down the road and what will not drive you crazy a year or two from now (I really hate having to hunt for binkies for my grandkids!)
I did the expensive formula route for my daughter too ($)/can in the early '90's). Except for the staining issue, and icky spit-up smell, it worked. In a couple of years it will all be a memory and you will have lived to "tell the tale!"
Just breathe, and enjoy your little one. they grow up way too fast.

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K.G.

answers from Omaha on

whatever she wants/needs to sleep. quite frankly hospitals dont know it all.

the first thing i would pack in my bag for the hospital would be a nuk pacifier. my boys got one from the get go.

i breast fed but every day one feeding would be subed as a formula bottle.

i wanted them use to it so if i needed to leave them for any reason they would not be distressed.

they both took to the routine great. and neither one had any issues of giving up the pacifier between 18-20 months. they actually stopped using it except at bedtime at about 16 months.

you're the mom- you know what you baby needs. :)

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N.W.

answers from Davenport on

My daughter was the same way with the swaddling and the pacifier (also loved the finger)! I say swaddle as long as you need to, sleep is important! We went through MANY kinds of pacifiers before settling on a nuk (I'm pretty sure that is what it is) but it was the bulb type not the orthodontic type. It was the only one she would use! They will get attached to them but you are in charge and can take it away whenever you want!

Just go with what you feel comfortable with, you're the mommy!

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C.S.

answers from Green Bay on

Hi,
I've never heard about stopping swaddling by 3 months. I know that you don't want them to overheat but using light pj's and a light blanket can help with that. My little one couldn't sleep without being swaddled. We actually continued it until she was one and a half, just gradually loosening the blanket a bit each week. Before we knew it, she was sleeping without being swaddled. Pacifiers are recomended by the aap for babies because studdies have shown that they help reduce the risk of sids. I think you can read about the study on the parents.com website if you want. If your baby won't take a pacifier maybe you could try a different shape. My daughter refused the orthapetic shape but loved the "bulb" shape but now there is the "binky" shape that kinda looks like a pinky finger. I've seen them at target. Maybe that would help. Good luck .

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L.

answers from Minneapolis on

Hi M.,

I kept swaddling my daughter until she was at least 6 mos. old (maybe until about 8 months)-- it was the only way she'd sleep at night. My doctor said there was nothing wrong with swaddling her as long as she was active during the day and developing her arm, hand, etc. muscles then.

I can definitely tell you that swaddling her did not delay her development in any way. She sat, crawled and walked at normal ages and now at 20 months she's a crazy little monkey who climbs everything!

L.

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