What Function Do Baby Receiving Blankets Serve?
When a baby is first handed over to their parents in the hospital, the lightweight blanket they’re swaddled in is called a ‘receiving blanket’. Receiving blankets are used by medical staff to dry your baby and to ensure that they are warm. Because they come in packs of two or four, receiving blankets are a very common sight around the homes of new parents. As a result, they’re often used as makeshift burp cloths, swaddling blankets or even bath towels.
These blankets also sometimes become beloved keepsakes of parents who wish to hold onto that all-too-brief period of time in which their child was new to the world.
What size is a receiving blanket for a baby?
Most receiving blankets are square and measure 30 x 30 inches although a rectangular 30 x 40-inch size is also popular. While this is enough material to wrap up most newborns, many parents prefer to use a larger swaddling-specific blanket.
Swaddling blankets are usually square and have more material, often measuring as large as 50 x 50 inches. These are great during the colder months or if your child prefers to sleep warmer. The extra material makes these larger blankets easier to swaddle with. Just make sure you securely tuck in any loose fabric.
How do I wrap a baby in a blanket?
Wrapping your little one up in a blanket might look pretty simple, but if you’ve never done it before, you’ll know it requires a bit of practice. Here’s how the pros do it:
Step 1: Lay out your swaddling blanket in the shape of a diamond with one of the corners pointing towards you. Fold down the top corner of the blanket (the opposite corner to the one pointing towards you) and lie your baby down on the blanket. Their neck should be resting just above the fold as shown in the diagram.
Step 2: Make sure that your baby’s arms are down by their sides, pull either of the side corners across their chest and tuck it behind them.
Step 3: Next, bring the bottom corner up over their feet and across their chest, before snugly tucking it over their shoulder.
Step 4: You should now have only one corner remaining. Pull that across their chest in the opposite way and tuck it under their body.
Step 5: Check for loose fabric and any area where the blanket might easily come free. Make sure all fabric is securely tucked. This will ensure that your baby doesn’t wiggle free. Loose blankets in cribs are never safe for newborns, so be extra careful with this step.
That’s it! Your little one is now a warm, safe, baby burrito!