So my dd is 8 months old and still prefers to fall asleep swaddled. She usually breaks out from it (we use the Miracle Blanket) midway through the night, and stays asleep for the most part (though sometimes she is fussy and we re-swaddle her and she drifts back into sleep after a few seconds of nursing). My dh and I are starting to think she's getting to old to be swaddled (thanks, Mom), but it seems to be the most comfortable way for her to fall asleep. Any tips on swaddle "weaning" would be great! Or thoughts from those who have swaddled for 8 months or longer. Thank you!
When to stop swaddling?
We swaddled until just a few days after DS turned 9 months old. In my experience, when he was ready to stop it was easy. We tried several times before and either he couldn't fall asleep or if he did he couldn't stay asleep. I was using a Woombie with the legs so it was a pretty loose swaddle. As spring came I was worried about him being too hot swaddled so I just decided to try it and it went really well! It's sort of amazing what a difference a month makes; I'm sure if I'd tried at 8 months it would have been a nightmare.
Interestingly no longer needing to be swaddled happened at exactly the same time he started really crawling.
One of my kids preferred swaddling until he was about 15 months. Crazy, I know, but it worked for him. It was just his arms, but my husband would swaddle him in a big piece of jersey. He would lie down on the floor and happily allow himself to be "baby burritoed." He continued to sleep with that blanky until he was about 4. As for weaning, we just stopped when it was obvious that he was never still swaddled by morning. He gave it up for naps after nightime, iirc. My in-laws gave us a hard time about it, but our oldest had been a terrible sleeper, so we were already confident about doing what worked for us and not worrying about the opinion of others. It was our sleep/sanity after all!!
His twin brother and older sister gave it up much earlier. I think we just followed their cues, and when it didn't seem to help with sleep, we stopped.
My 15mth old daycare baby gets swaddled here for naps, but not at home for bedtime ... it's the only way he's consistently napped here for the last 9mths, and as soon as I lay him on the blanket, he puts his fingers in his mouth & calms right down. He is almost always out of it when he wakes. If I don't swaddle him at the beginning of the nap, he will not fall asleep, he'll just sit up & play until I do wrap him up. Once swaddled, he's asleep in 3 min, every time!
His mom has never gotten him to enjoy being swaddled at home, so it's definitely something he associates only with napping here in the pack'n'play.
Today is his last day here, so I imagine it's also his last swaddled nap :)
DD is 15 months. I slowly weaned her off the swaddle by making it looser. I used a very light fabric so there wasn't a chance of her getting suffocated. She still has a semi swaddle but it's more just tucking in than anything. She can get right out of it but it signals sleep time to her. I lay her on her back on the blanket (thin cotton) and tuck the sides around her so her arms are in and then flip her on her tummy. She's also in a sleep sack. My vote is to keep swaddling as long as it works. Why not? A lot of adults like to wrap themselves in heavy blankets to sleep too.