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Could you provide recommendations of how to dress a newborn for sleep - she will be born in January in the hot summer time. We do not have air con in our bedroom so on the hot nights am worried about how to dress. We do plan to swaddle her.

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Posted a response on 25/9/23

Red Nose Education

When swaddling/wrapping a baby Red Nose recommends a light weight cotton/muslin wrap & ensure baby is not overdressed under the wrap or that there is a risk of wrap becoming loose & covering baby’s head &/or face.
More information here:https://rednose.org.au/article/is-it-safe-to-wrap-swaddle-my-baby
“Use only lightweight wraps such as cotton or muslin (bunny rugs and blankets are not safe alternatives as they may cause overheating”
If using blankets, use lightweight & layer as necessary, tucked in firmly (not too tight) so they do not come loose & cover baby’s head/face.

It can be difficult to work out what may be the most appropriate clothing/bedding for baby when sleeping.
Red Nose recommends dressing baby according to the room temperature, rather than trying to modify the room temperature with heating or cooling.
Use light weight bedding & clothing & lightweight muslin or cotton for wraps.

I wish I could give you some specific guidance for dressing a new born, but every baby is different.
Red Nose has the following general information.

“Dress baby and use layers as you would dress or use layers yourself: to be comfortable, neither too hot nor too cold.

Dress baby for sleep and add/remove lightweight blankets to ensure baby’s back or tummy feels comfortably warm to the touch.
Remove hats, bonnets, beanies and hooded clothing from baby’s head as soon as baby is indoors.  - Always sleep baby with head & face uncovered.

A good way to check baby’s temperature is to feel baby’s chest or back of neck, which should feel warm (don’t worry if baby’s hands and feet feel cool, this is normal).

Ensure baby’s head is uncovered - no hats, bonnets, beanies or hooded clothing.

As long as baby is put down to sleep on their back, and that baby is dressed appropriately for the room temperature – not overdressed or under dressed – with their head and face uncovered, you can feel reassured that you are protecting baby from overheating.”
When choosing sleepwear for baby, ensure it fits well around his neck, so there is no risk of baby slipping into bag or under bedding, risking covering head/face.

Many parents will use long sleeve onesies for winter, & short sleeve onesies for warmer weather, or simply nappy & singlet for those very hot days/nights.

Add or remove lightweight blankets tucked in, depending on room temperature.
This may look different once baby is rolling.
Many parents will then use a safe sleeping bag (with arms out) & no blankets, as baby often will wriggle out from under blankets.
You can then add more clothing to baby in sleeping bag for warmth in colder times.

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