Safe Swaddling for New Born Babies
How can swaddling affect my baby’s hips?
When in the womb, your baby’s legs are in the foetal position with the legs bent up and knees apart. Sudden straightening of your baby’s legs can loosen the hip joint and lead to changes in how the hip develops.
How do I swaddle my baby safely?
Swaddling your new born baby can help them to feel more secure and settled and can help them to establish regular sleep patterns. There are many techniques to swaddle your baby that will make them feel secure and at the same time look after your baby’s hips. Which ever method you choose, make sure you always leave enough room in the wrap to allow your baby’s legs to move freely. Your baby should be able to bend at the hips and rest with their knees apart.
What should I NOT do when swaddling my baby?
Avoid tight swaddling of your babies hips. This does not allow enough room for your baby to bend their hips and move their knees apart. Tight swaddling of babies hips has been linked with an increased incidence of developmental hip dysplasia.
What does the research say?
Research has shown that tight wrapping of a baby’s hips with the legs held straight can lead to hip dysplasia and hip dislocation. When the practice is stopped the frequency of dislocation is significantly reduced.