Help Baby Sleep Better: Guide to Buying Sleep Sacks
Updated: Nov 13, 2021
Sleep sacks are wearable blankets that reduce the incidence of SIDS while ensuring your child's body temperature is well regulated throughout the night.
How Sleep Sacks Help Babies Sleep Better
By now, if you've been paying attention, you know I'm huge on getting rid of those sleep props, BUT here's one that I'm actually asking you, convincing you to use!
Sleep sacks aren't just part of the nighttime jammies fashion options. It's a rare product that can help your child sleep better at night without ever fearing the need to wean it one day. They are widely available, relatively inexpensive compared to other baby gadgets, and unlike the pacifier, it does not require parent intervention in the middle of the night. Most importantly, sleep sacks provide security and comfort without any of the drawbacks that come with a blanket.
Sleep sacks are wearable blankets that reduce the incidence of SIDS while ensuring your child's body temperature is well regulated throughout the night. They are considered one of the rare sleep props that are actually good and can help your baby to sleep. They make the transition out of a swaddle much easier, acts as a cue for your child to sleep and can prevent their leg getting stuck in awkward places of the crib. So don't hesitate, sleep sacks are the way to go.
When to Use a Sleep Sack
As early as 3 months, your baby may start rolling over and practice these new moves day and night! Yes, exciting time, but also sleep disruptive times. If your baby was using a swaddle, this would be the best time to transition from swaddle --> sleep sack. You can start by taking one arm out first, so your baby can get used to the new found freedom, or simply jumping straight to a sleeveless sleep sack which can be less confusing and surprisingly trouble-free.
Sleep sacks can be used from early infant days until toddler years! In fact, sleep sacks act as a deterrents from having your toddler learn to climb out of the crib (note I said deter, not stop). With a sleep sack on, your toddler may very well never make the attempt to scale the crib and never know the freedom waiting on the other side. So best to prevent your toddler from ever trying, because once they know do...they'll practice till they master it.
Guide to Buying Sleep Sacks
With the plethora of baby products available to parents, I want to take a moment to mention the most important sleep sack features to consider when you purchase your sleep sacks.
Snap vs sewn shoulder strap: snaps make it easy for taking on/off but some toddlers might learn to pull them loose so you may choose to opt for ones that are sewn together.
Under arm snaps: makes the arm hole adjustable for a smaller baby and is used in sleep sacks that will grow with the child.
Zipper direction: zippers that close on the bottom makes it convenient for nighttime diaper changes.
Roomy for the hips: allows your baby’s hips to move freely to reduce the chance of developing Infant Hip Dysplasia.
Zipper placement: on the side vs in middle.
Size: always buy the correct size based upon your baby's weight and length to prevent the chance of baby slipping down inside the sleep sack or the fabric accidentally covering baby’s mouth or nose.
Seat belt slots: eases transfers from car seats and strollers into the crib on nights you know you will miss your child's bedtime.
Material: wool is great temperature regulator but generally takes more laundering care. Cotton is most commonly used and usually easier to wash. Micro-fleece is simple to wash, stain resistant and quick dry.
TOG: choose a TOG that is suitable to the climate and environment your baby is sleeping. There are seasonal vs four-season sleep sacks.
Brand: choose a reputable brand for a peace of mind.
Want 4 more tips on getting your child to sleep better? I've got you covered here.