Q: When do you know it’s time to stop swaddling and how do you do it?
GNSS: I normally recommend to stop swaddling when you baby shows signs of moving around and rolling over. At that point it’s a good idea to start weaning. We want to make sure the baby is safe if they do roll over with their arms free. Generally this can be around 4 to 6 months of age. Also if you’re looking to start sleep training and your child is at an appropriate age it’s normally a good idea to get rid of all sleep props.
You can gradually wean from swaddling by taking out one arm for 2 to 3 days, then taking out the other arm, for 2 to 3 days, then removing it completely. You can at the same time loosen the swaddle a little bit around the body and legs so the baby get’s used to being able to move around a little. Going cold turkey is also an option – it’s really up to you and what you think your baby would respond to best.
A great transitional item is a sleep sack. Many parents use this as an in between because it keeps the baby’s arms free for when they start rolling over but it also gives them the security of feeling like they are wrapped in something.
Remember the more consistent you are with any change the quicker your child will adapt. And they do adapt a lot easier than we think they will. Definitely a lot quicker than we do to change! Good luck!