Swaddle weaning

Discussion in 'The First Year' started by parker362, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. parker362

    parker362 Member

    Hi folks,

    I know there are tons of topics on here about sleep and naps. My twins sleep ok at night but are disaster nappers! I have read so much on the subject and don't think anything will help. I am just going to have to survive until they are a little bigger and older so we can sleep train them. My question for this thread is, did anyone else have trouble weaning their babes from swaddling?
    Mine are 4.5 months old now and are starting to roll over on their sides (not completely over but I'm sure that will happen soon!) so for this reason I really want to stop swaddling. Plus...it's summer, so hot and we don't have air conditioning!
    We have been trying for over a week now to just do 1 arm out which seems to be the most common form of swaddle weaning I have read about and it seems to work ok but the second we try to leave the second arm out or put them in a regular sleep sac....FAIL!!! Their little limbs flail all over the place and they wake up the second we try to lay them down.
    Did anyone else have this issue? What did you do or how long did it take you to wean them from swaddling?
  2. MrsWright

    MrsWright Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    My daughter loved to be swaddled! We ended up giving her a baby (one of those stuffed animal heads with a small blanket attached) and eventually the blanket I nursed her with (still her BFF to this day;)) and when she fell asleep we took it out of the crib. Did the same with my boys but they were much calmer than her;).

    We also did a mini CIO and let them fuss for a min then went in and rocked, patted, reinsert paci, ect and it took close to a week....just be consistent:)
  3. daisies

    daisies Well-Known Member

    i was really late to wean from the swaddles. And my weaning process was really slooow.
    Both my kids were rolling over for quite a while before i decided to stopped swaddling. :hush:

    I finally decided to do it when dd started busting out of her swaddle and would wake herself up and couldn't go back to sleep without being re-swaddled, only to bust out again :aggressive:
    I got her this swaddle so she couldn't bust out. It has arm holes so it was an easy way to release one arm at a time without compromising the wrap (even for miss houdini). It is also snug (not tight) around the legs which i think helped make the transition to free arms easier.

    What worked for us:
    I let one arm free for a week then put that arm back in the swaddle and released the other arm. then both.

    I also started the weaning by only changing the wrap at night and not for naps (they had better night sleep). If i thought they were likely to have a bad night (teeth, messed up sleep, etc.) i would go back to full swaddle.

    Making sleep the first priority, and swaddle weaning the second priority was slow but relatively painless.
    GL take your time. you will figure out what works for your LOs.

    ETA - you might try hold their arms securely close to their body when you put them down. sometimes when the first get laid down is the worst time for flailing. holding their arms makes them fell secure. they relax and you can release arms.
  4. weegus

    weegus Well-Known Member

    My twins loved their swaddle as well. And they were rolling for quite some time before we canned it, but they never rolled over while in their swaddle. They were 10 months when we weaned. We tried everything to ease them out of it... loosen the swaddle, one arm out at a time, different blankets... they just weren't having it and it was prolonging the agony. So, we went cold turkey. Sleep was MISERABLE for about 18 hours and then it was just HARD for another 18 hours. After that it was smooth sailing. Three days total for them to get it; not nearly as bad as I thought. We also used a modified CIO (letting them cry for short intervals before going in to comfort) along with pacifiers and consistency is key. I wanted to cave so many times but I knew I HAD to gut it out. And Amy makes an excellent point. I did hold their arms securely when I put them in the crib then moved my hand to their chest for 30 seconds or so to keep the flailing down.

    I weaned my other two babies sooner. My third son did fine with a quick wean... one arm out for 3 days then the other arm out (with the body still wrapped) for another 3 days, then ditched the blanket. He was done by 3 months. My daughter weaned for over a longer time, but the same process... one arm out for 3 weeks, then the other arm (with body still wrapped) for about 1 month, then ditched the blanket. She was done by 5 months.

    Good luck! I can totally relate to the stress involved with this process!!
  5. parker362

    parker362 Member

    Ok so I've got the original arm I left out swaddled again and am leaving the other out for a while! Then we will try both arms again. Who knew swaddling would be so hard to wean from!!
    Helps to know that you guys swaddled for so long! I thought people might think I was crazy since they will be 5 months soon!
  6. Debbiemichelle

    Debbiemichelle Well-Known Member

    It was winter when we weaned them from swaddles, and I think we were not seriously trying to stop using them for about a month. By that I mean we had a nap here and there where we tried not using them and then that was usually a big fail also so we went back to using them. The reason I mention winter is because at some point we started putting them in sleep sacks instead of swaddles so they still felt a little more bundled but were more free than the swaddles. Sometimes I think this extra step was good because it kept them snugged up still, but it also added the element of then weaning them from sleep sacks (which ended up being easy because it got hot and that was that, no more sleep sacks). Sometimes I would stay in with them during naps and when they startled, gently catch and lower their arm back down to the bed so it didn't flop down and wake them up.

    I think the week we got serious about stopping swaddles was on the tough side sleep-wise, but it was probably only a few days really that were really tough. Good luck!
  7. paperclippy

    paperclippy Well-Known Member

    Bringing this topic back up because I have a question about it . . . we need to swaddle wean because our girls are outgrowing the largest size of halo sleepsack swaddle.  They're not rolling yet so it's not a safety issue, but they're getting too tall and they often bust out of the swaddle during the night.  We've been working on sleep with them for a little while and are getting into a pretty decent routine, with the main problem being naps that are too short and when they bust out of their swaddle at night it's hard to get them back to sleep.
    They're 7 months, 5 adjusted, and a bit over 13lbs.  All the sleep books say not to sleep train until at least 14-15lbs, so we're waiting a little longer to go for full sleep training.  My question is: do I try to wean swaddles now, or do I wait until we do sleep training and go cold turkey on the swaddles since we'll already be doing a limited cry approach to sleep train them?  The book I have is The Sleepeasy Solution if that matters.
  8. Rollergiraffe

    Rollergiraffe Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I would quit the swaddles if they're busting out consistently. I found that once they started breaking out of them it was more frustrating for all of us trying to keep them in and having them wake themselves up with unswaddled arms. It didn't take long to readjust.
    We had good luck with sleep sacks and they were especially nice for winter as they couldn't kick off the blankets.
  9. lcjackman

    lcjackman Well-Known Member

    I agree with everyrhing said above. I thought it was going to be a bigger deal than it was - they were fine after a night or two of it taking a little longer to fall asleep than usual. And we stopped swaddling for the same reason - breaking out of them was waking them up in the night and I was tired of middle-of-the-night swaddling. Halo Sleep Sacks are still working really well for us as a replacement.
  10. parker362

    parker362 Member

    We tried and tried to wean them from their swaddles with one arm out, then the other arm out and nothing seemed to work until finally we went cold turkey at the same time as we nap trained them.  They were terrible nappers so we nap trained them with the Sleep Easy Solution.  The book says to do night training first but we didn't.  In fact we never had to do night training.  They woke up once a night until about 10 days ago and they have finally started sleeping through the night on their own!  Yay!
    Mine were 5 months and 13 almost 14 lbs when we nap trained them.  I loved the Sleep Easy Solution for nap training.  It breaks it down for you and really tells you how to do it.  I wasn't sure I would be ok with them crying but honestly you know they aren't dirty, wet or hungry so they are just crying because they are learning to sleep on their own.  Plus no joke, they figured this out literally within a couple of days!  It changed all of our lives!  They were so much happier once they were napping better and it finally gave me a bit of down time!
  11. daisies

    daisies Well-Known Member

    i am on my phone so i can't link it but i switched them to the woombie (see twinstuff gear) to keep them swaddled longer and then to wean. loved it!
  12. joybee

    joybee Member

    We're loving our woombies so far!--and this is after using halos for our first two.

    One reason i think they have worked so well is that they can clasp their hands right under their chin in the woombie, and w the halos their hands were down at their sides. We tried a brief (2 day) trial of releasing 1 arm without much success. I think they wanted their lil hands together ;) so we're back to both arms in for now.

    Boys are 4.5mo now and its a relief to hear some on here swaddled for several more months. My singletons were both swaddled weaned by this point so i was feeling behind!
  13. paperclippy

    paperclippy Well-Known Member

    Just had to let you all know that my girls are NO LONGER SWADDLED!  Woohoo!!!!!  We used the zipadeezip and this is how we did it:
    - all naps in regular clothes + zipadeezip first, then at night...
    - put in diaper into zipadeezip, then put in zipadeezip into swaddle
    - 5 nights R arm out -- first couple nights were rough but not terrible
    - 6 nights L arm out -- again, first couple nights were rough but not terrible
    - 4 nights both arms out -- they did great from the beginning
    - put in PJ's into zipadeezip last night and they slept just fine!
    They're also napping in regular sleepsacks sometimes too now so it looks like we won't really need the zippys.  Now the only thing is that I need to buy some of those little mittens to cover their sharp nails so they don't scratch their faces during the night if I get rid of the zipadeezips.  Not all of their PJ's have hand covers.
  14. daisies

    daisies Well-Known Member

    yay!  good job paperclippy!
  15. kim01

    kim01 Well-Known Member

    what about those things that you can put in swings or carseats that comfort them and their heads? it close to the head supports but you can get all over body support. they also have those that keep them on their backs etc. I would check out babies r us and see what they have for baby support etc. I am sure you could find something that might work. keep the package and your receipt if it doesn't work they will take it back. or you can take two towels and roll them up and put under their arms and butt like a bit U. the icu nurses told us this. it would proably prevent them from rolling over. you could put a light blanket over them and just kinda tuck on both sides of the crib if possible. Good luck
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