Why Your Toddler Should Wear A Sleep Sack

Emily O'Gorman puts forward the case for using a sleep sack at bedtimes

At Good Night Sleep Site, we are often asked what our recommendations are for a positive sleep environment. We have a few sleep tools that we stand by:

1) A noise machine will help your child fall into a deeper more restorative state of sleep. 
2) Certain temperature – we like to see a temperature that is neither too warm for your                     child nor too cold (between 20-22 oC [68-72oF]). 
3) Have your child sleep in a sleep sack.

If you are wondering why we recommend a sleep sack, the reasons vary from safe sleep to practicality but before we get all serious… have you seen the super cute designs and patterns that are offered from an array of sleep sack companies? If your child is going to sleep, they might as well sleep in style, right? There are so many types, brands, weights, etc. it’s important to do your research: What season would you need the sleep sack for? What the material is (cotton/fleece)? What age and size do you need the sleep sack for? Also, look at reviews, what is best for you and your child.

The main reasons for having your tot use a sleep sack for bedtimes:

Good transition from swaddling
If you swaddled your infant and they have graduated from that, a sleep sack is an excellent way to transition. Your child will have their arms free, but they will feel the security of their legs and body being covered, this may provide them with comfort.

Cue child that sleep-time is coming
A sleep sack is something that can easily be incorporated into your babe’s bedtime routine. You can make this one of the last things that you do before you put baby to bed. After a few times of including this into your routine, baby will know that after the sleep sack comes sleep. #Glorious

They cannot kick off the blankets at night
Who has a tot that kicks off all of their blankets 7.3 seconds after tucking them in? Or says “I’m cold!” or “can you tuck me in?” for the 1600th time. With a sleep sack you at least know that a) your child will not be able to kick off the blankets (unless of course, they have some Houdini act they have been working on, and b) if they say they are cold, you can be reassured that they aren’t (but nice try, kid!)  

Keeps them at a constant temperature at night or naps
With keeping to the tune of your child not being able to kick the covers off, you can be rest-assured that your child is cozy throughout the night. So slumber away Mama and Papa.

For the climbers
A sleep sack prevents crib escape artists from climbing out of their crib, or at least makes it more difficult. If you have a visual monitor, you will be able to catch your little acrobat before they do their triple sow-cow out of the crib. Also for the smaller babes, a sleep sack prevents their legs from getting caught in between the crib rails and again, helps with restful nights (for us parents) when our littles wriggle and jiggle around the crib through sleepy times.

Avoid scratching
Lastly, for those sweet babes that have Eczema, a sleep sack is an excellent way to prevent babies and kiddies from scratching (and causing infection). There are even some sleep sacks that include built in mittens to prevent night-time scratching (on face and arms/neck). There is some proof that a child who has eczema and wears a sleep sack, their eczema clears faster and as less of a risk of infection or sores.

Whatever your reasoning is, consider a sleep sack. There are so many sleep sacks/wearable blankets to choose from that there is one that is right for you and your bambino. I promise that once your baby/child is used to the routine, they will not mind - and if they do we have tips for that too!

Emily is a certified infant and child sleep consultant with Good Night Sleep Site Wellington and mama of one rambunctious, hilarious, almost 4-year-old boy (who is just starting JK *tear*). When she is not wrangling him to put on pants or cleaning up his toys, she is committed and excited to help families get the sleep that they dream of by giving families the emotional and educational support to reach their sleep goals. Find Emily on her website, Facebook, and Twitter, for sleep tips, articles, blogs and more.

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