When Can Your Baby Sleep with a Blanket?
Many baby shower gifts are crib-related, including sheets, comforters, hand stitched quilts, and knitted blankets. It’s tempting to put all these gifts in bed with your baby, but adding a blanket or soft bedding too soon can be a danger to your baby’s safety. Today, we’re answering the question of when can your baby sleep with a blanket.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, there is no official age where having a blanket is 100% safe. Still, most medical experts feel that soft bedding is okay for healthy babies at 12 months or older. However, the ideal time to introduce soft blankets is when they’re 18 months.
So – when can your baby sleep with a blanket? The major reason babies should not sleep with blankets is that blankets can be a hazard in the crib. Every year over 3000 babies die unexpectedly while they are asleep. The reason is often related to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), suffocation, or strangulation, with blankets increasing the risk of all three.
Because of this, the safest sleep environment for a baby is a bare crib that is completely free of comforters, bumpers, pillows, and stuffed toys. The only thing your baby needs at night is a fitted sheet that is tucked in tightly on all sides.
Babies can be swaddled or in a swaddle sleep sack from birth until two months of age or when the baby starts trying to roll over. Babies can also be dressed in a sleep sack or wearable blanket sleeper to keep warm. These one-piece outfits come with snaps, a zipper, or elastic gathers, and they are designed to cover your baby’s body but not their head.
Baby bedding can seem overwhelming at first, but keeping these guidelines in mind can keep your child safe and reduce the risk of SIDS. Put simply, if your baby is less than 12 months old, the only thing they should have in their crib is a fitted sheet. After 12 months, it is okay to use light bedding, but you can always stick with a sleep sack instead. We hope this helped answer the question of when can your baby start to sleep with a blanket. If you have further questions, reach out and we can help!