When a mother gave birth, her baby adopts a natural ‘frog’ position. Her body naturally open her hips and bend her knees. There is no need to worry at all about this position because, in fact, it helps our baby in the development of her socket hip joints and ball. However, many of us believe this is not the ‘good’ position for our baby. Then, we choose to ‘fix’ it by swaddling our baby because we believe this treatment will help our baby to settle, feel safe, and comfortable. We treat our baby this way because we believe they can grow better than if we let the natural position, but do we realize that by treating our baby like that, we have changed our babies’ natural position and increased the risk of hip dysplasia?
When we swaddle our baby, we extend their legs and wrap them together. Even though our baby may feel comfortable inside that blanket, she may also feel uncomfortable for we have put her hip sockets in their unnatural development.
From studies our experts did at The International Hip Dysplasia Institute, we know that by positioning our baby in abduction and keeping their knees in slight flexion during swaddling, we can keep our babies from hip dysplasia. Furthermore, the same study also gave us a clue on what we can do to swaddle our babies safely. With five simple steps, we can stop worrying about our baby suffering from hip dysplasia:
- Take a blanket, put it on the floor, and make a diamond shape using the blanket.
- Fold the top corner of the blanket down, then with her shoulders across the blanket, carefully put your baby.
- Draw a top corner of the blanket around her, then tuck the top corner under her bottom
- Take a bottom corner and draw it up gently. Then tuck it in. Make sure your baby can keep her legs in her fetal position and nothing else.
- Get the remaining corner and draw them across her. Then, tuck the blanket in near her neck.
Please be careful when swaddling your baby because if you put it too tight, she can feel uncomfortable because of the heat. Another risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome may also increase because of this treatment. So, make sure you do it carefully and gently.