Basics of Baby Sleepwear for the First Year
There are so many sleepwear opinions and options out there! Just type “sleepwear for infants” in Amazon and you’ll quickly find yourself dazed and confused.
I’m narrowing down the basics for you, to give you an idea of the who, what, when, where, why and how for the baby's first year :)
o During the first few months of a baby’s life, swaddling can help them sleep better since the startle reflex makes their arms and legs flail uncontrollably. We used this during the newborn and early infancy stage with a cotton-footed pajama like these or a sleep gown like this. If it felt cooler than usual, we would double swaddle with a muslin blanket as a mid layer.
o This was great after Wes was around 3 months old. He was a nighttime pooper and having his hands so close to his body didn’t allow the movement he needed to have a BM. He looked like a cute star fish in this :). There’s a transitional version with zippers to help them out of the swaddle one arm at a time. Also used with cotton-footed pajamas.
o Wes LOVED this thing. It’s a wearable blanket that he wore from months 5-11. He likes to sleep on his side and the blanket would help weigh his legs down comfortably. It can be worn longer than a year but we wanted to allow him to move around freely in his crib. He couldn’t stand, crawl, or kneel while wearing this. We also wanted to move on from anything he’d need to transition out of (believe it or not, it took a few nights for him to get used to sleeping without it). Also worn with cotton-footed pajamas.
Fleece Footed Pajamas / Wearable Blankets
o There are all sorts out there but these worked the best for us. We keep the room between 69-71°. Wes tends to wake more when he's cold and so far this does the trick. Some recommend adding a cotton-footed pajama in addition to a fleece one if the room is very cold. If the fleece pjs are roomy and let out body heat, I'll put a T-shirt underneath until it's snug-fitting on Wes.
And how do you know if a room is too cold? There’s a lot on the internet about room temperature and my rule of thumb is to dress the baby in one layer additional to what you’d be comfortable sleeping in, in the same room. Once he’s asleep check his back and chest -- it should be warm to the touch, not sweaty and not cold.