By Raising Children Network
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About wrapping

Wrapping helps prevent SIDS; infant sleeping bags are an alternative to wrapping; don't wrap a baby if you co-sleep
  • Wrapping soothes some babies. It also cuts the risk of sudden unexpected death in infancy (SUDI), including SIDS and fatal sleeping accidents, because it keeps babies on their backs during sleep. Wrap your baby from birth up until she can roll onto her tummy (4-6 months).

  • If your baby doesn’t like to be wrapped or can roll onto her tummy, try a safe infant sleeping bag instead. Like wrapping, this helps keep babies on their backs, which reduces the risk of SUDI.
  • If you sleep in the same bed with your baby, don’t wrap her – she might get too hot. This increases the risk of SUDI. Dress baby as you would dress yourself. Co-sleeping can be dangerous for your baby.

How to wrap a baby: six steps

A demonstration of six steps to wrapping a baby
  • 1. Use a lightweight cotton or muslin wrap. Fold the top edge down by about 20 cm. Lay baby with shoulders in line with the fold.
    2. Place one of baby’s hands under the fold.
    3. Bring the edge of the wrap across the body. Tuck it under baby’s legs.
    4. Place the other hand under the fold.
    5. Bring the other edge of the wrap across baby’s body. Tuck in under baby’s back.
    6. Fold any extra length up and under baby’s legs. Wrap firmly, but make sure that the wrap isn’t too tight and that baby can fully stretch out his legs. Wrapping the legs and chest too tightly can lead to hip and breathing problems.


What to wear underneath the wrap

Dress baby according to the seasons. Don't let the wrap cover baby's mouth or head
  • In warm weather, your baby just needs a singlet and nappy underneath the wrap. Overheating has been linked to SUDI, so try to keep baby cool and comfortable while she sleeps.

  • In cool weather, dress your baby in a lightweight jumpsuit under the wrap. Don’t use a bunny rug or blanket – it can cause overheating. Be careful not to overheat the house, especially if baby is ill. 

  • Don’t let the wrap cover your baby’s head, ears or chin. Wraps that are too high can block baby’s breathing and cause her to overheat.

  • Last updated or reviewed 05-06-2018