How to Keep Your Baby Warm This Winter
First, consider the positioning of your baby’s crib. You want to keep it away from drafty windows, air vents and heaters.
While your preferred method of coping with cold winter nights may be stock piling warm blankets on your bed, this is not recommended for your baby. Instead of covering your baby with blankets while they sleep, opt for a flannel or cotton fitted sheet, coupled with either a sleep sack or, if your baby is content to be swaddled, swaddle him or her using a muslin blanket.
On particularly cold nights you may wish to warm up the crib. This can be done using a microwave bag or hot water bottle. Just be sure that before you put your baby in the crib you not only remove the heat source but check to make sure it has not made the fitted sheet moist or too warm.
In terms of clothing, favor footed sleepers, especially at night. Sleepers are designed to reduce the amount of skin exposed during diaper changes. Furthermore, you won’t have to worry about booties or socks being kicked off, or the material bunching and riding up, which is a common problem with pants. If you must dress your baby in pants, consider leggings, which are more likely to stay in place, or layer pants over a pair of tights.
When going outside, be sure to accessorize your baby’s outfit with a warm hat as babies lose heat through their head. Conversely, to prevent overheating, be sure to remove the hat as soon as you are back inside.
As tempting as it may be to bundle your baby in a heavy snowsuit before venturing out, this is not ideal for car seats as it creates too much bulk between your baby and the straps. Similarly, you should not tuck a blanket between the car seat straps and your baby. Since your baby should not be bundled up while in their car seat, when possible, allow your car to warm up before putting baby in. This should hopefully reduce the sensation of being cold and the likelihood of them becoming fussy.
You may wish to drape a blanket over top of your baby in their car seat, avoiding any lose material around their face, however, another option is to purchase a car seat cover. There are plenty on the market that are not only safe but will keep your baby warm. Just remember to purchase one that attaches to the entire car seat and not just the straps. Similar covers exist for strollers. However, if you’re looking to keep your baby warm, skip the stroller and carry your baby against your body in a sling or baby carrier.
After bathing your baby, one of the most important things you can do to help keep them warm is to dry them as thoroughly and quickly as possible. On especially cold days, reduce the amount of skin exposed at a time and favor sponge baths.
And finally, an easy way to keep your baby warm this winter that you will both enjoy is through skin-to-skin. Simply place your baby in just their diaper against your bare chest and cover yourselves with a blanket. Although this is especially great for breastfeeding, it can be done at any time.