What are the benefits of a sleeping bag or sleep suit?
They’re a safe sleep association
All parents know that sleep equals sanity, so it’s no shock that we’re permanently on the hunt for anything that can help your baby catch a few extra zzz’s. A dummy can fall out in the middle of the night, and soft toys aren’t considered a safe comforter for newborn bubs, so the need for something to serve as a safe sleep association is key!
A baby sleeping bag, also known as a sleep suit is an invaluable tool for helping your baby get a safe, warm, comfortable night’s rest. Putting this on your little one night after night starts to represent a time to go to sleep, as well as providing adequate warmth and comfort throughout the night.
They help to control startle reflex
The other benefit of a sleeping bag for newborns is that your baby’s arms are contained, so they won’t wake themselves during the night with the startle reflex that all newborns have. It will also prevent babies from scratching themselves with their fingernails during the night.
What you should look for when buying a baby sleep suit:
- A TOG system
When it comes to choosing a baby sleeping bag, it’s important to take into account the climate you live in and the temperature of your baby’s room. Sleeping bags and suits come in different TOG strengths, TOG stands for (Thermal Overall Grade) which relates to how much warmth the sleep suit provides. TOG is a unit of measurement used to calculate the thermal insulation of a product, the higher the number, the warmer the suit. If you’re wanting to put your baby in a sleeping bag in the summer months, you should pick up a 1.0 strength sleep suit. For use in the coldest winter months, a 3.5 strength TOG suit might be best. It’s always good to check the temperatures recommended for each TOG strength before you buy the suit.
It’s always best to buy from reputable brands when buying a sleeping bag or sleep suit, as they’re made from durable, breathable materials. You should never let your baby go to sleep in anything with a hood or with cords or ribbons hanging off it – as this can be a choking hazard.
You should also always look for a sleep suit that’s hip-healthy, with an extra wide shape and garment construction. Grip pads on the feet are always a great idea for babies who are walking.
The most important factor when it comes to comfort is the softness of the material used. Many sleeping bags and suits are made from a soft cotton fleece fabric, which is both breathable and provides a thermal grade of warmth. You also want to ensure the zipper is covered with fabric at the top of the suit near the neck, so that the zipper doesn’t dig into your baby’s skin as they sleep.
Overall functionality is important when it comes to finding the perfect sleep suit, as you need to be able to reach dirty nappies with a two-way zipper, and go on baby quickly and easily at bedtime.
Baby sleeping bag features to consider:
- Transitional ‘wings’
Many sleeping bags offer a transitional system with wings, where you can begin to transition your baby’s arms from swaddled in, to out in stages, one arm at a time. This will allow your baby to become used to the feeling of having their arms out – slowly – andas a result, begin to wake themselves up less.
- A two-way zipper
A two-way zipper is a great functionality in sleeping bags and suits, as it allows access to change a dirty nappy without having to remove the whole suit from baby.
- Washable fabric
A cotton, machine-washable suit is ideal for dealing with vomiting or reflux babies, because you can wash as much as you need without worrying about your sleep suit losing its shape or softness.
A sleeping bag that converts to a sleep suit is a genius way to get bang for your buck, as it has the ability to grow with your baby. Once your baby is walking you will need to put your child to sleep in a sleep suit with legs in case they stand up in their cot and trip over.
Here are the 10 best baby sleeping bags of 2020:
Real review: melissa b, lovetodream.com.au
“I truly feel confident laying our baby girl down to sleep every night knowing she’s safes and secure. We’ve been using the love to dream swaddle for a couple of months now (baby girl is 5 months) this was the perfect transition from the traditional swaddle method, we needed something to contain her as her little hands were creeping out of the traditional swaddle and causing a potential risk with loose blankets. She absolutely loves having her little hands up near her face. She feels safe and secure in it and sleeps 7pm-7am with one night feed at 11pm. I also love the fact I can take her arms out with the transition zips once she’s ready, great value for money. Thanks love to dream! I would highly recommend this product!!!!”
Real review: Ashleigh, babystudio.com.au
“I have had the ‘Coolies’ for both my daughter and son years ago and I am back to buy more for my youngest. My daughter was 2/3when I first found out about these and my son was a newborn. We used them through winter with a blanket and alone in summer. My kids always slept great when they wore them! Highly recommend.”
Real review: Nikki, facebook.com/smartsnugg
“I highly recommend using Smartsnugg. My husband and I are able to sleep without worrying throughout the night. The SmartSnugg has been able to alert us when our little boy rolls over or is to hot or cold”
Real review: Kristy G, babylovessleep.com.au
“I recently purchased a cozy suit with legs. It is such good quality, my baby settled quickly in the suit and sleeps well while using it. The all seasons suit gives me the opinion of layering his clothing or removing items based on the room temp, while allowing little hands and feet to be covered and cozy all night long.”
Real review: Sarah Quinn, productreview.com.au
“I bought my daughter an ergo 0.2 tog swaddle as it’s perfect for winter with her pjs on and it doesn’t make her sweat and is light enough for summer.This is the only one she doesn’t make her way out of and the two way zipper makes it easy for late night nappy changes without disturbing her too much.”
Real review: sk, babybunting.com.au
“Comfortable sleeping bag for the cooler weather with lots of room for the little one to grow into. Our little one can sleep through the night during the Sydney winter with just the sleeping bag and a thin short onsie underneath. We don’t have to turn on a heater overnight.”
Real review: HCMcFinley, productreview.com.au
“For colder climates, this is a fantastic sleep suit bag. The quality of manufacture and the amount of thought that has gone into the design makes the higher costs worth it. There is the certainty that if you put your baby in this on a cold night, they will not wake up cold (if their room is within the appropriate temperature range). An additional plus is the fact that it comes with sleeves. As new parents, some are advised that it doesn’t matter if your babies arms are cold, as long as their core temperature is warm enough. I cannot attest to the factual accuracy of this advice, but personally I believe that the sleeves offer a higher level of comfort (temperature-wise) than if they were absent. I also purchased this because the idea of the 4 way zip and the “grip-pads” that make walking safer.”
Real review: Donna A, catch.com.au
“Purchased 4 of these sleep suits for my granddaughter. They are perfect for the hot Queensland nights and are a really generous size. They will fit her past 24 months. Really very happy with this purchase.”
Real review: Grace, nestdesigns.com
“Great product! Very soft and comfortable. Perfect for all the seasons in my opinion. I like that the sleeve is removable.”
Real review: SA, amazon.com
“This sleep sack was recommended to me by baby’s sleep coach. The other brand she suggested was popular, but way too pricey for my liking; I’m glad I bought this one instead – it’s perfect quality for baby, as well as being reasonably priced! And best of all, like the name suggests, it really does grow with your child. The size that I purchased (6-18 months) has more-than-ample length and width, and an appropriately-sized armhole to accommodate a growing baby, without compromising on safety. There is no fabric bunching up or hanging loose on my now 9-month old, who tends to be a very active sleeper that moves around all over the crib while sleeping.”
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