Which Swaddle is Best for Summer? Katie Hilton – Midwife & Health Visitor

So, you’ve got your baby into a great sleep routine and the swaddling is working a treat, but now summer is in full swing and temperatures are soaring. Many parents are concerned about swaddling their baby during the summer, particularly in warmer weather or when on holiday.

When an adult becomes too warm, then sleeping can become difficult, but we just throw off our blankets, hang a leg out of bed or open a window. Babies are a little more complicated. They can’t effectively tell us when they’re too warm and tend to be more sensitive to temperature changes. They also aren’t particularly good at controlling their own body temperature and we know an overheated baby is at an increased risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). But they do sleep better when swaddled, so how do you safely combine the two in warmer months?

Clothing

When settling your baby to sleep when the weather is warmer in the summer, use lightweight, breathable clothing before placing your baby inside their swaddle. If it’s really scorching hot then avoid clothing altogether, just leave the nappy on to avoid any nasty accidents! Select natural fibre clothing which responds well to heat such as organic cotton, muslin or bamboo. How many layers of clothing and which items of clothing you put on your baby, will also depend on the tog rating of the swaddle you’re using. Refer to our handy guide below!

Swaddle

When selecting your summertime swaddle, always avoid those made from synthetic fibres such as polyester and fleece, as these materials can make your baby very warm by trapping heat inside the swaddle. Don’t be tempted to loosen the swaddle, as this will enable your baby to work themselves loose and will often wake them up, a proper full swaddle will help your baby to fall asleep quickly, relax and hence cool down better. For temperatures between 16-22c use the Love To Dream™ Swaddle UP™ 1.0 tog and for times when the weather is warmer or when on holiday use the Love To Dream™ Swaddle UP™ Lite 0.2 tog which is made from a soft, light fabric making it ideal for warmer weather.

Bedding

During the warmer summer weather, you shouldn’t need to use anything other than your swaddling blanket when putting baby down for bedtime or naptime.

If using the Love To Dream™ Swaddle UP™, you never need to use additional blankets or bedding, simply choose the correct tog warmth for the season. Always ensure your baby is wearing an appropriate level of clothing underneath the swaddle as described above.

Room Temperature

Try to focus on ensuring the room your baby will be sleeping in is kept at a comfortable temperature throughout the day. This might involve opening a window or using a fan when your baby isn’t in the room. Just be sure to never position your baby in the direct line of a fan or below an open window, as this can make your baby too cold, even when the weather is very hot outside.

Blackout blinds or curtains can help keep the sunlight out of the room. Ideally the temperature of the room should be between 16-20c, you can keep an eye on the temperature by using a room thermometer.

How to Recognise Baby is Too Hot

Babies should not sweat, if you notice your baby is sweating then remove the swaddle, reassess the amount of clothing your baby is wearing, any other bedding and the temperature in the room. Also be sure to check the type of swaddle you are using and the type of material. You can assess how hot your baby is by placing your hand against their chest, back of the neck or ears. If your baby feels hot, then he is.

If you have any sleep tips of your own to help when the weather gets warmer then please get in touch, we would love to hear from you! Find us at…

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Written by

Katie Hilton
Katie Hilton graduated from Staffordshire University with an RN Dip HE in Adult Nursing. She then went on to gain her BSc Hons Midwifery. Katie worked as a Midwife in Wolverhampton, Staffordshire and Cambridge before relocating to Vancouver in Canada. Katie spent this time working as a Registered Perinatal Nurse at a busy downtown hospital splitting her time between Labour Delivery Postpartum and the Neonatal Unit. On returning to the UK Katie continued to work as a Midwife, predominately in Labour & Delivery before completing her MSc SCPHN Health Visitor at the University of Wolverhampton. Throughout her career, Katie has gained a wide myriad of experience in all areas of obstetrics, child and family health.