Baby Series Special, Part 2: Quick Guide to Swaddling, Dummies and Comforters


You can purchase swaddling blankets at various baby shops. I have found that swaddling helps baby feel warm and secure, as if they are being held. Always use a swaddle, large muslin or baby cot sheet blanket which is light in weight and never wrap too tight around baby.

It is important to remember not to swaddle baby in a blanket that is too thick and would cause him to overheat.


1) Use a sheet or muslin that is big enough to wrap around baby

2) Open out the sheet and lay baby onto the middle of it.

3) Baby’s neck should be on the top edge.

4) Gently hold baby’s left arm down and bring the sheet diagonally across and tuck under baby’s bottom.

5) Hold baby’s other arm gently down and bring sheet diagonally across baby and tuck in under baby’ bottom.

6) Gently lift baby and place in crib.

7) Ensure that you do not have any of the sheet near baby’s face when doing this (diagonally it should have the shape of a v neck jumper at the neck). Ensure this is not too tight and once baby is sleeping loosen it.

Dummies, Pacifiers and Comfortors

The Benefits of using Dummies/Pacifiers

Research has shown that dummies can help prevent cot death and they help regulate babies breathing They also can prevent thumb sucking which can affect babies teeth and can be a difficult habit to stop. Remember dummies should only be given at sleep time and not during other times of the baby’s waking day. For babies with Reflux it is advisable to use dummies during the feeding. Dummies should only be used up until the age of one year. They should be removed once the baby is one year old. Your baby will be upset for a couple of nights but use the controlled crying method.

The Problems That Can Occur When Using Dummies After The Age Of One Year

Dummies used after the age of one year can affect babies teeth. Dummies used after the age of one year can also affect your child’s speech as they often try to speak whilst holding the dummy in their mouth which can cause a lisp or babies often don’t speak as the dummy is in their mouth.

Other Comforters

These can be purchased before babies are born and shops often try to sell you a few of these items. Babies often choose not to use these and attach to something simple like their muslin as it is the comfort they receive whilst being fed and held by their mother.

Thumb Sucking

This should be avoided. Thumb-sucking may look cute but it’s a difficult habit to break. It also pushes the teeth forward and your child may not thank you later on in life when they have to wear a brace. To prevent this put mitts on your baby or use baby sleep-suits that fold over on the sleeves so hands are covered. If baby is able to pull mitts off temporary solutions could be using long socks or sewing up sleeves of pyjamas or sleep-suits until baby is out of this habit

Kim Ovenstone Maternity Nurse, T 07708812759