In the early days of life, newborns look cute, comfy, and safe in their sleep sacks, but they grow up and get ready for bigger and better things like blankets. So the question remains: how long do babies use sleep sacks? When do you use sleep sacks? And maybe most importantly, how in the heck do you use a sleep sack?
Make your life as a parent a little easier by educating yourself on how to use sleep sacks when you no longer need them. Learning curves are difficult, but with the help of some of these tips and tricks, your baby will be sleeping peacefully in no time–and that means you too!
WHEN TO START USING A SLEEP SACK
Parents often choose to swaddle their newborns. This can be ideal because your baby will be wrapped like a cozy burrito, providing them warmth and comfort and preventing them from getting free and tempting fate. Newborns sleep the whole night through most of the time when they’re swaddled due to their likeness to the womb. Kaiya Angel's 100% organic cotton swaddling sleep sacks are available and easy to use for your newborn.
When babies are starting to move and roll around on their own accord–keep an eye out for this around the 2-month mark–the swaddle needs to go. This is due to the fact that infants rolling around makes them susceptible to suffocation. Because they can’t use their arms to roll back, if they roll on their stomach, they could potentially cut off their breathing.
This is where Kaiya Angel's sleep sacks come into the crib’s picture. Sleepsacks are best started after the swaddling period ends–it’s a great transitionary piece of clothing between swaddles and blankets. With varying TOG (thermal overall grade), you can pick a sleep sack that will be best for your baby and the room’s temperature. Kaiya’s sleep sacks are 100% organic cotton made with organic material and fit your baby’s head with two holes for their arms so they can push themselves back to their backs if and when they roll around. A loose-fitting garment, the sack is great for movement and allows for mobility and flexibility for your little one while still preventing extreme mobility.
Sleep sacks are amazing for keeping warmth contained in the crib without loose blankets hanging around. This reduces the risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). For most babies, it can be difficult to detect when you can introduce a sleep sack. Typically, by two months, it’s best to go ahead and introduce it. For some, it could be as long as six months until your baby is ready for a sleep sack. There’s nothing wrong with the discrepancy Every baby’s sleeping needs are unique.
Don’t be wary of swaddling or frightened by its application and putting it on. Kaiya Angel’s sleep sacks are super user-friendly and can be put on in your sleep. With tiny armholes and varying materials, sizes, colors, and shapes, sleep sacks are basically mini sleeping bags for your baby. You’ll want to cuddle them, even more, when they’re wrapped in Kaiya Angel’s comfy, soft, and organic materials.
With a zipper protector that protects your baby’s chin and a long and curvy two-way zipper design, diaper changes are easy and accessible. Especially in the middle of the night when you’re exhausted, diaper changes can be achieved with minimal effort. Your baby will be extra warm with fold-over mitt cuffs and plenty of room by their feet to kick and move their legs. No need for extra blankets because they’ll be warm enough with their weighted sleep sack.
Are Sleep Sacks Safe for Babies?
Sleep sacks are not only safe for babies but encouraged for safe and sound sleep. Acting as wearable blankets, sleep sacks lower the risk of sleep-related injuries and potential death (SIDS). While the first year is strife with risks, and especially in the first few months with rolling around, sleep sacks are necessary items in your child’s closet.
Sleep sacks’ design is functional, practical, beautiful, and accessible keeping in mind that children need to move around at night. Protecting their legs from getting stuck in the crib’s rails is important. Crib-related injuries are common, racking up to thousands yearly, and that’s why at Kaiya we ensure that your baby is safe and sound every step of the way.
WHEN TO STOP USING A SLEEP SACK
As with a swaddle zip up, sleep sacks are the same–your baby will one day no longer need them. This transition can be different for everyone, ranging in different time periods, different adjustability, and flexibility. Parents may stop using a sleep sack for several reasons:
A baby’s size and weight are huge factors in stopping their use. Most sleep sacks are around premature to extra large sizes, with the extra large ones fitting up to 36 pounds and extending up to 40 inches long. Babies can reach this limit as early as 18 months, and some won’t reach it until 2 years old–the limit varies. If a sleep sack doesn’t fit at all–that’s proof that your baby is potentially ready to leave the comfort of the sleep sack and head to blanket town.
Your baby may absolutely adore the sleep sack and never want to take it off–other babies may actually be excited to shed the extra weight and embrace a new way of sleeping. With the baby’s newfound movement and desire to be active, they’ll try to leave the crib or their sleep sack. If your baby is fighting the sleep sack and struggling to find comfort in wearing it, it could be time to consider an alternative.
From a safety perspective, the AAP recommends that loose blankets be avoided at least in the first year. Parents will keep this recommendation in mind until their child’s first birthday. Some children use their sleep sacks into toddlerhood.
WHEN CAN A BABY SLEEP WITH A BLANKET?
The blanket question. Some parents are out there curious and concerned about the use of blankets. There are so many blankets they’ve given at this point that they’re considering using them as window curtains—but fear not: blankets are recommended after one year. Keep in mind that your child needs to be ready. The chance of SIDS significantly decreases after one year, so blankets are less likely to suffocate your baby. Mobility is increased, so if they do roll over, they can easily roll back in any direction.
If your child is over a year old, they’re able to sleep with a blanket as soon as they’re able. How to tell? Your baby will be able to roll over with ease. Some children may be unable to stay under a blanket until five years old–so once again, it varies!
HOW TO TRANSITION FROM SLEEP SACK TO BLANKET
Transitioning from a sleep sack to a blanket can be simple but needs some resourcefulness as well. Here is some advice on easing the transition from sleep sack to blanket. Check out Kaiya Angel for all your baby sleeping needs to guide you through.
Pick a Special Blanket
During the times of day when your baby is sleeping, like bedtime and naptime, introduce your child’s new blanket that they’ll grow attached to. Even during cuddle time on the couch or in the rocking chair, allow your baby to play and feel the blanket. They’ll begin to associate their blanket with sleep time. In the first few weeks and months, this time will be a transition for your baby. Keep this in mind and be patient with their adjustment and familiarity with the blanket.
Use Just a Top Sheet
A very thin top sheet can do wonders for your baby’s blanket news. It may not be as warm as a thicker blanket, but it will help them adjust to the new accouterments. Drape a sheet over your little ones while they’re still in the sleep sack so they can acclimate to the new material in the crib with them. Remember to wait until they’re at least one year old.
Use a Lighter Sleep Sack
A lighter sleep sack, similar to swaddles and PJs, can be great for your baby. Depending on the type of fabric and thickness, your baby may want to simply go down a level of sleep sack and get used to sleeping without one. A baby using a 100% cotton blanket will be better able to adjust to a 100% cotton blanket. Adjust bedroom temps to make sure your baby is staying warm.
Dress Them As If They Won't Use the Blanket
Some toddlers may not be able to sleep through the night, especially with the new blankets. Dress your baby in layers so that they will be warm throughout the night. This way, they won’t even need the blanket that’s draped over them. Good PJ options include fleece or cotton footsie pajamas. Depending on your baby’s level of comfort and the room temperature, your baby may want a specific type of PJ.
So those are some tips on how to use a sleep sack and when to use one. It’s easier to adjust to a blanket when your baby has gone through the tips of finding one they like, using a top sheet, and wearing lighter sleep sacks. Kaiya’s 100% organic sleep sacks are great options to get your baby sleeping well and warm through the night.