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When to Put Your Baby in a Sleep Sack

Ask any new parent their #1 priority when it comes to their newborn and most likely you’ll get the same answer: sleep! But with so much information about sleep and the multitude of products meant for infant and baby sleep, it’s hard to know what to get and when, and to know what will help your baby sleep, and help them get quality sleep, too. All of which means better sleep for parents, too.

According to the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics), all babies and newborns should be placed to sleep on their backs – always – for naps and bedtime. This dramatically reduces the risk for SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). They also recommend that nothing should be in the crib (or co-sleeper or bassinet, etc.) other than a firm mattress and a fitted mattress sheet designed for that particular mattress. That means no bumpers, no toys, no extra blankets, just the mattress, mattress sheet and baby.   This is what makes swaddling is a great option for newborns – and adorable since your baby will look like a little burrito all bundled up! So in accordance with the AAP, swaddling eliminates the need for any “extras” in baby’s sleep space. Just make sure the swaddle isn’t too tight and that baby can move their little legs. Swaddling helps soothe, provides comfort as it feels like the womb, and ensures that baby will fall asleep on their back. It’s time to stop swaddling however, when baby looks like he is trying to roll over (which could be as early as two months…) and that’s when it’s time for the sleep sack!

The thing is, so many parents are curious about when to use sleep sack and when to start using a sleep sack, so see below for some FAQs about the how’s and when’s of sleep sacks!

What is a sleep sack and when can a baby use a sleep sack?

Sleep sacks are a popular bedtime option for parents when their little one outgrows swaddling. Essentially a wearable, zippered blanket for baby, sleep sacks mimic swaddling, which helps baby sleep better for longer periods of time.

When should I start using a sleep sack?

If you’re wondering when to put baby in sleep sack, they are good for newborns through toddlerhood, although every baby is different. Once your baby starts rolling over on their own, or is breaking free of the swaddle, it’s a good idea to introduce the sleep sack.

When do sleep sacks work best?

Sleep sacks work best when baby no longer enjoys the soothing benefits of swaddling. Since it’s a wearable blanket, sleep sacks also adhere to the AAP rule of “bare is best” – nothing in the crib (or co-sleeper, bassinet, etc) other than the mattress, mattress sheet or cover, and baby. A sleep sack will keep baby at just the right temperature, so no need for any extra anything in his sleep space.

Why are sleep sacks better for babies?

The Dreamland Baby sleep sacks are better for babies as they are made from 100% natural, soft cotton, and provide room for baby to kick and move their legs. It can be used starting at 8lbs through toddlerhood. The gentle weight naturally reduces stress and increases relaxation through deep-pressure stimulation to give baby feelings of security and comfort - like a hug! They are designed to help baby feel calm, fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. This deep-touch pressure can help soothe anxiety and encourage calming sleep.  We also have a two-way zipper for easy diaper changes making middle of the night changes easy, so everyone gets back to sleep faster.

When do you use sleep sacks and do you use a sleep sack for naps?

The good news is, baby can use his sleep sack anytime you put him to sleep. It will soon become a comfort object, something familiar that triggers “it’s time for bed!” which should help your little one sleep like a pro! 

When can a baby use a blanket?

Because of risks of SIDS, it’s best not to put anything to sleep with your baby until they are at least 12 months old. That means no blankets, no toys, no bumpers anywhere in their sleep space but baby himself (in a swaddle or sleep sack, of course!). But once your baby reaches 18 months, it’s generally fine for them to sleep with a blanket or comfort object. That said, by the time your little one is 3 years old (and/or 30+ pounds), she will probably love the 4-lb Dream Weighted Sleep Blanket. This premium quality weighted blanket is designed to deliver calming comfort, security and promote healthy sleep patterns. The satin edge is a luxurious touch and serves as an extra layer of comfort and security for little ones who love to rub something soft on their face. Plus, the evenly distributed, gentle pressure mimics the feeling of being hugged and encourages comfort and relaxation during nighttime or naptime. Just make sure that she can remove the blanket if needed and remember that weighted blanket for kids should be worn below shoulders and never cover her face or head.

When should you start sleep training?

The good news is, when it comes to sleep training, it’s never too late to develop healthy habits. Generally speaking, when your little one is between four and six months old, they are “ready” to start, but as with everything related to your baby, you know him best! So trust your instincts, speak with your pediatrician, and understand that every baby has their own timeline. That said, establishing sleep routines early on (bath, bottle (or boob!), bed… or when he’s older: bath, books, bed, etc.) will help when it comes time for baby to learn to sleep on his own.

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