Should We Be Swaddling At 5 Months Old? | An ErgoCocoon Winter Swaddle Review
We tried to stop swaddling shortly after we outgrew the groSnug: at that point, he could not use normal swaddles as he was waking up tangled in the loose material, and he was too old to fit in his swaddle bag - but very quickly he returned to waking hour upon hour. Having moved him to his cot, we'd taken to using regular sleeping bags - leaving the arm holes unused and his arms within by his side, and then wrapping a muslin around that to keep it secure. It was desperation calling, and it was never going to be a long term solution. But it was all we could do to stop him from waking himself up. Very recently, we discovered the Ergo Baby Coccoon. Much like the groSnug, but made to fit babies that are older and bigger - perfect for when babies are not yet ready to sleep without The Gro Snug is a sleeping bag with the option to close the arm holes, allowing the top half to be swaddled tightly, and the bottom half free - well, as free as you can be inside a sleeping bag. One of the main issues raised by the swaddling study previously mentioned was the ill-hip health that could occur in swaddled babies - using sleeping bags that allow free movement in the hip reduce this risk completely. It's such lovely material, perfect for winter here in Scotland - the outer layer is made from soft jersey, and the inner 100% cotton, so it really does have that 'fuzzy' feeling.
This has poppers over the arm holes - convenient to allow transition into a normal sleeping bag, hopefully, in a few months time. I say hopefully, as I made a very similar statement a mere few months ago... The zip is also so much more convenient than other sleeping bags we have tried - whoever thought that using poppers with a young baby would be smart clearly didn't have a young baby. Zips for the win. This zip is also a two way one, so nappy changes at night are no problem with this. That was always one issue I'd been yet to find a way around with a swaddled baby; how on earth do you change a nappy without unwrapping and unleashing the mini monster? Two-way zips, thats how. In terms of sizing, I want to say it is big, but that's probably because I've purchased a 3-12months bag for a 5 month old baby; Harrison was never going to fill it quite yet. In saying that, the top is quite narrow, and rather than keeping his hands at his sides Harrison likes to be awkward and curl them on top of his chest, which means that any swaddle product for us would probably be a little bit tight. In a few months time, that may be an issue, but here's hoping at that point we've transitioned to the regular sleeping bag option....
There is a lot to be said for the design and the vibrancy of this particular sleeping bag; its a bad day when your four month old baby has a nicer duvet design than you do... I was worried about the color fading very quickly, but so far so good - I won't jinx it as it has only had a few washes, but there have been no color spill overs and the fabric is still as soft as ever. Ask me again in 2 months when Harrison has had his way with it though... One thing I will be doing with these is buying a few more; with our groSnug, we only had one as I was conscious we would only be using it for a few weeks (if only!), so it was washed almost daily and the fabric lost all of its elasticity. The ergoCocoon products are more expensive, retailing at £38.95 - but given the quality and the frequency of use, you most definitely get your bang for your buck. To make this stretch though, we will be investing in a few more: I'd rather have three and swap between and keep the integrity of each, than completely run one into the ground and have to buy three in the long run anyway.
I cannot recommend the ergoCocoon enough: although I had always claimed I would never swaddle after four months, sometimes recommendations are there to be ignored. Provided swaddling is done safely, it can be a sleep savior, and I don't know where would be at this point without it. ergoPouch is an Australian company founded by a sleep-deprived mum, and that much is obvious when using the products, it feels like something designed by a mum, for a mum. Finding the Cocoon has allowed us to continue to swaddle without fashioning our own using a sleeping bag and a questionably tied muslin has been nothing short of amazing, and it's simply proved that sometimes we have to source products outwith the brands we already know and love.