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Learn Why You Baby Fights Swaddle (And What To do !)

Swaddling is an ancient technique involving the act of wrapping a baby in a blanket or a sheet.

Many believe that swaddling calms infants because it feels as if they are in the womb again. That being tucked up like a burrito gives them a sense of safety and security.

Moms often learn how to swaddle their newborn at the hospital through experienced nurses who would vouch for this technique.

But what if a baby fights swaddle practices?

What if an infant fights being swaddled but can’t sleep without it?

This article will help new mothers like yourself understand how to manage when your baby fights swaddle techniques.


  1. How to Tell if a Baby is Fighting the Swaddle?
  2. Why Do Babies Fight Swaddle?
  3. What to do When your Baby Fights Swaddle but Won’t Sleep Without it?
  4. When to Stop Swaddling Baby?

How to Tell if a Baby is Fighting the Swaddle?

For a new mom, an upset baby can be extremely stressful.

Determining why your infant is unhappy can be a number of reasons such as a dirty diaper, hunger or being sleep deprived.

But maybe, it is the swaddle that is upsetting them in the first place.

Babies that enjoy being swaddled settle down rather quickly, all snug in a rug like a bug.

If a child does not enjoy this technique, there are a number of signs that can help you pinpoint why they’re upset about being swaddled.

Tries to Get Their Hands Near their Face

A common problem that new moms experience when swaddling a newborn is when the child tries to break their hands free from the blanket.

They want to keep their hands by their face to soothe themselves. Or perhaps they are feeling claustrophobic.

If your child truly does not like being swaddled, they might try to break their arms free from the blanket, making the act of swaddling that much more difficult.

Continued Restlessness and Crying

This is rather self-explanatory but should be a factor to consider. Babies who enjoy being swaddled will eventually calm down, allowing you to have a peaceful moment.

Keep in mind that this may take longer for some infants. Keep a close eye on your child, observing if they calm down.

For some, this may take more than five minutes. If they continue crying for an extended length of time, they may be telling you that they are uncomfortable with being swaddled.

Wakes Up Repeatedly

Another sign that an infant may not like the swaddle can be directly linked to their sleeping patterns.

Babies are swaddled so that they can sleep and be at peace.

A baby who fights swaddling will go to sleep but keep waking up. This is because they are not comfortable enough to stay asleep for a good length of time.

Shorter naps followed by a fussy baby may mean that your child does not like being swaddled.

A baby that is fighting the act of being swaddled will exhibit one or all of these signs that were listed above.

Now that you are able to determine what ways a child might display being uncomfortable in their swaddle, you can move on to why they are not content with this technique.

Why Do Some Babies Fight Swaddling?

Just as all of us have unique personalities, a baby can dislike being swaddled for a variety of reasons.

We will go over a few in greater depth to give you a better idea as to why your child may not like being swaddled.

Not Swaddled Correctly

One of the first reasons that nurses remark on is that new moms do not wrap their babies up tight enough.

This is nothing to be dismayed over as swaddling takes a great deal of practice to perfect.

You can’t make the best “baby burrito” overnight. If an infant is not swaddled tightly enough, they can wriggle themselves free, becoming fussier in the process.

Also, keep in mind that those infants that enjoy being swaddled like it for the sense of security it provides.

A loosely wrapped child may not feel comfortable or secure, thus fighting the swaddle that you have created.

So, are you swaddling your baby properly? the video below will tell you!



Although this isn’t the first reason that comes to mind, it does indeed exist. Research has proved that most infants prefer to feel tight and secure, but some babies do not like this altogether.

Just as we all have different likes and dislikes, your child may not enjoy being wrapped up so tightly.

Swaddling your baby may help you realize that your child is slightly claustrophobic.

Too Warm or Too Cold

Picture yourself trying to sleep when it is either too cold or too hot.

Are you able to do it successfully?

Are you comfortable?

This is the same for your infant. Depending on the blankets you use, or lack of for that matter, your baby might not be comfortable in their swaddle.

This can lead people to believe that their child does not like being swaddled when in fact the infant just wants adjustments to be made.

Your Baby Dislikes the Process

This is a common reason that might explain why a baby is showing signs of not liking their swaddle.

In order to swaddle a child, you need to tuck them into a blanket, securing their arms and legs.

For some infants, the act of being swaddled is not desirable while they still enjoy the swaddle itself.

In other words, your baby may not like being tucked, but settle down once in the swaddle.

Understanding why a baby might fight swaddling is critical. But what should you do if your child likes being swaddled, but does not like being made into a burrito?

What to do When your Baby Fights Swaddle but Won’t Sleep Without it?

When a baby fights swaddle but can’t sleep without it, a new solution must be found for a good night’s sleep.

There are a number of swaddling techniques that will allow a child to feel secure without the traditional “baby burrito” style.

For new moms that are unsure which one would work best, try them out for a few days.

Make sure to give your infant time to adjust to the new technique before crossing it off your list.

Below are a few options for swaddling alternatives.

U-Shaped Swaddle

Some infants fight swaddling because they want to have their legs and arms free. This is the perfect option for a wriggling baby.

Simply take a soft, clean towel and put it under your newborn in a U-shape.

The towel should be placed around the hips and legs. You can even try a blanket and see if that works better.

Swaddling Once Asleep

Babies who dislike the act of being swaddled tend to fuss when they are getting made into a burrito.

If your child needs to be swaddled in order to get an extended sleep session, then perhaps you should tuck them in once they are asleep.

Simply rock them until they pass out and then commence to swaddle.

This alternative ensures that there is no fighting and that they will also get a good rest. It’s a win-win situation for you and the baby.

Getting Help From Other Products

If you feel that your swaddling techniques are not up to par, then maybe consider purchasing a product that will help your baby feel secure without going through the paces.

The Miracle Blanket is an option that allows you to swaddle your baby without doing all the wrapping.

Miracle Blanket Swaddle Image

Miracle Blanket Swaddle

Instead, it provides you with a pre-made swaddle that will get baby tucked in sooner.

These techniques and products might help your little one enjoy being swaddled while foregoing all of the fuss.

With a new baby, it is questionable as to when you should stop swaddling altogether.

When to Stop Swaddling Baby?

As a general rule of thumb, a baby should be swaddled up until about four to five months of age.

Weaning a baby off swaddling should be done slowly over time. Start with having one arm out, moving on to two, and so forth.

Babies that are either too strong or too mobile should be weaned earlier, preferably around three to four months.

Also, it is important to note that babies that are beginning to roll-over are most likely near the end of being swaddled. The reason being that this may become dangerous.

The technique of swaddling babies is common because of how beneficial it is, offering both you and your baby a moment of peaceful rest.

Some children, however, simply don’t like being swaddled. They fight it for a number of reasons.

There are solutions to help a baby that does not like the act of being swaddled but can’t sleep without it.

As a new mother, all of these questions can be overwhelming, but hopefully, this article helped to shed some light on the matter.

Additional information:

Photo & Video credits: Amazon, IHDIOnline.

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