When can your baby sleep with a blanket: what the experts say

Whether you feed your toddler in the morning or put him to sleep at night, keeping him safe and protected is always a priority. That is why it is so important to know exactly when your baby can sleep with a blanket.

When can your baby sleep with a blanket?

You want to make sure that your baby is feeling well and cozy, especially when you are not with them. But the contents of your toddler’s crib can be more dangerous than you think.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), letting a baby under 12 months sleep with a blanket is strongly discouraged. In fact, any loose bedding or soft objects should stay out of the crib until this point.

In this article we will talk about how to keep your little one warm without a blanket, the risks of letting them sleep with one prematurely, and some tips for finding the perfect blanket for comfort and safety.

Keep your baby warm without a blanket

If your little one falls below the 12-month mark, or your pediatrician still recommends that they sleep without a blanket, then you might be wondering in other ways to keep them warm all night.

Here are just a few tips on how to keep your little one cozy all night without blankets and loose bedding in the cradle.

Layered clothing

Giving your baby extra layers instead of a blanket is a great way to make sure they are warm and safe while dreaming. But keep in mind that you should never put more layers on your little one than an adult would wear in the same environment.

Overheating, which we will discuss in more depth later, is a primary safety issue for young babies, and you should always consider both their body temperature and the temperature around them.

Wrap your baby

Wrapped baby

Wrapping is a technique that involves wrapping your baby in a special wrapping blanket. This is helpful in soothing your little one, keeping them warm and keeping them snoozing all night.

Before wrapping your baby for the first time, make sure you understand how to do it correctly. For example, when wrapped, your baby’s arms should not be outside the wrapper or over the chest. Instead, they should be straight down the side.

To reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), always lay your baby on its back to sleep and do not wrap them too tightly. If two or three of your fingers can fit between the wrap and your little one’s chest, then you’ve done it right.

Adjust the temperature

Along with wrapping, one of the quickest and easiest ways to keep your little one comfortable and safe at night is to keep the temperature in the room controlled.

The perfect temperature for your toddler will drop somewhere between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit (between 20 and 22 degrees Celsius). Whether it is a cold winter or a hot midsummer day, this should be the room temperature all year round.

With these tips in mind, here are a few risk factors you need to know to ensure that you and your baby sleep well.

The risk of your baby sleeping with a blanket prematurely

Baby lying on his back with his arms up

Overheating

As we mentioned above, temperature control is an important factor when putting your baby to sleep. Just as an adult may have trouble sleeping in unusually hot conditions, babies may also struggle to snooze if they are too toasty.

During the first 12 months, temperatures that are too hot for your baby can increase the chances of cot death.

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

We can not stress the importance of lowering the risk of SIDS enough. About 2,300 babies in the United States die of SIDS each year, and there is still no known cause for this syndrome. However, we do have a list of problematic practices and their connection to SIDS.

For example, keeping the temperature too warm or letting your little one sleep with a blanket before they are a year old are two common approaches associated with SIDS.

Choking

baby sleeping next to a teddy bear

A more direct result that blankets can have on babies when they are too small is covering their face and making it difficult to breathe. Since newborns and infants still have trouble lifting their heads, blankets in their cradle can increase the risk of accidental suffocation.

Any soft object that may be able to cover your baby’s mouth or nose while sleeping is considered a choking hazard. Keeping their crib free of blankets, bumpers, stuffed animals and the like will ensure a safe snooze environment.

Exhaustion

As a parent, waking up in the middle of the night to care for your baby is nothing new. However, if your baby does not get enough sleep because it is too hot under a blanket, it can lead to serious problems.

To determine if this is the cause of your toddler’s difficulty sleeping, you may want to consider implementing a strict bedtime routine.

By doing this you can then identify whether the added blanket is the problem or whether they are simply overtired, undergoing a developmental milestone or are not a fan of their sleeping environment as a whole.

A good way to keep things consistent and ease them to sleep is to have bath time before bedtime. We recommend using our Bathtime Essentials set for clean and healthy skin every time you place them in the tub.

At Mustela, we also recommend following the bath time with massage to relax your little one’s body. Our Melting Massage Balm works wonders when added to their night routine, and it moisturizes and nourishes your baby’s skin, leaving it soft and supple.

Whatever you decide to incorporate into their nocturnal routine, giving them consistency will help them connect that part of the day with bedtime and help you determine any underlying issues.

Complete exhaustion is not good for you or your little one, so if you take the time to identify and isolate any problems like a blanket that is too heavy, you can save many nights of lost sleep!

Once your baby has exceeded the 12-month limit and your pediatrician has said it is safe for them to sleep with a blanket, here are some tips to let your little one cuddle up with the perfect sleeping buddy.

Tips for letting your baby sleep with a blanket

baby looks up at parents wondering when baby can sleep with blanket

Avoid the risk of suffocation

Choosing the right blanket for your baby can seem like a challenge in itself. Fortunately, there are a few simple guidelines for buying a safe and comfortable rug that they will definitely love.

The first thing to keep in mind is that you should always avoid rugs with weaves, ties or cords hanging around the edges, as these decorative features can be a choking hazard.

Choose the right materials

Next, make sure the material is ideal for your baby’s skin, especially if they are prone to eczema or have very sensitive skin. Lightweight and breathable materials, such as organic cotton or muslin, are typically the best options.

If your baby’s skin starts to react, then it’s best to stop using the blanket right away. Once you have confirmed the source of the reaction, we recommend using Stelatopia emollient conditioner to keep your baby’s skin happy, healthy and itchy.

While textured materials can help stimulate your little one’s brain when they interact with the world around them, avoid textures like fur that can become loose and be inhaled by your baby.

Expert Tip: For little ones with eczema-prone skin, try our special Stelatopia Skin Soothing Pajamas to deliver skin-soothing moisture all night while keeping your baby warm

Remember the size

Finding the right size for your child’s rug can make all the difference when it comes to both safety and comfort. Something too small can mean cold nights, while too much material can result in risks such as overheating.

While size charts are available to help you find the best solution, no two babies are alike. So be sure to consider their specific needs and size when deciding which rug to buy.

An ideal blanket covers your baby, but is not so large that it can suffocate or suffocate them. It is a good idea to check their growth every month or so to make sure you are using an appropriate size.

The perfect rug for your little one

Baby wrapped in a blanket

It is important to know when your baby can sleep with a blanket. And keeping the precautions we have outlined in mind will help you and your little one snooze better.

If your baby is over 12 months old, it can keep them cozy and even provide mental stimulation by putting them in with the right blanket. Just be sure to follow our tips to find the perfect solution!

Remember that even when your little one is too young for a blanket, methods like layering and wrapping can help them maintain the right temperature while they sleep.

And if you are looking for other ways to give your baby the best night’s sleep, use our baby oil to massage their body, moisturize their delicate skin and help them have a relaxing transition to bed.

No matter how old your baby is, we have everything you need, from daily skin care to certified organic products like our cotton and aloe water wipes. With our selection of products and tips, you are sure to find what you are looking for at Mustela.