Baby blankets are undoubtedly a newborn’s best friend. Even, many babies don’t get ready to sleep without it. Therefore, buying an appropriate blanket for your little one becomes obligatory for you. With several types of baby blankets available in the market today, deciding which one is perfectly suitable for your newborn is really a daunting task. However, if you already know what different types of baby blankets are, it becomes quite easy for you to buy a perfect one for your infant.
Different Types of Baby Blankets and Their Uses
Receiving blankets are definitely the most versatile type of baby blanket because they are highly multi-functional and can be used for almost any purpose, including a play mat, burp cloth, swaddling blanket, breastfeeding cover and more. However, they are designed specifically to receive the baby at his birth.
Usually made of a lightweight and eco-friendly material such as organic cotton, fleece, flannel, muslin and bamboo, receiving blankets have either a square or rectangular shape and are mostly used in hospitals. Being quite thin, they can also be layered with other kinds of blanket. Needless to say, these all-purpose blankets are a staple in a newborn’s world.
Security blankets, as the name itself suggests, are designed to make babies and toddlers feel secure and comfortable at bedtime or in other unusual situations. Often made of an ultra-soft material like fleece, these blankets usually come with a stuffed animal attached.
Sometimes also called blankeys or loveys, security blankets are used by a baby until he grows into a toddler. For the reasons, they must be durable so that your child could enjoy his toddler age to the fullest. However, your little one may also get attached to any other type of blanket and can treat it as a security blanket.
Swaddling blankets are designed to wrap babies tightly, making them feel like they are still in mother’s tummy. These blankets are quite similar to security blankets in the terms of functionality, with the only difference that they come with Velcro fasteners that help you swaddle your newborn quickly and easily.
Unlike receiving blankets, swaddling blankets are often made of muslin, larger in size and have a square shape. Not only they help your little one stay calm and relaxed but also they prevent him from scratching face with his little nails. Some varieties of swaddling blankets even allow you to change diapers without fully un-wrapping the baby.
Crib Blankets or Quilts
Crib blankets and quilts, which are larger than receiving blankets in size, may be used as bedding and for various decorative purposes. You can place them on the mattress, use them as a baby play mat and hang them on the wall of the nursery for decoration. Often made from fleece, quilts are a perfect item for casual use around the house.
Sleep Sacks, also known as sleeping bags, are essentially wearable blankets designed to keep your baby fully covered while sleeping. Perfect for toddlers who often kick off regular blankets in their sleep, these blankets come with armholes and neck openings to allow for free circulation of air flow so your child neither gets too warm nor wakes up due to the cold at night. Strictly speaking, sleeping bags are a safe alternative to traditional baby blankets.
Things to Look for When Buying a Baby Blanket
Buy for the Season
The first and foremost thing to look for in a baby blanket is the material using which the blanket is made. Different materials have different properties that make them suitable for different seasons. So while you’re going to purchase a blanket for your little one, keep the current season in mind.
Choose the Right Type
The next thing is to decide what type of baby blanket would be perfect for your little one. As mentioned above, there are mainly five types of blankets you can choose from. Whatever type you select to buy, make sure the blanket size fits your toddler well.
Think of the Comfort
Whatever product you purchase for your little one, comfort must be your topmost priority. Make sure the blanket you’re buying is neither too harsh nor too soft for your baby’s sensitive and delicate skin. If the blanket doesn’t feel pleasant against his skin, he’ll definitely cry.
Consider the Safety
To make sure the blanket would not cause any allergic reaction to your baby’s fragile skin, check whether or not it is free from all kinds of chemicals. Also, the blanket must be lightweight and breathable to avoid the risk of accidental suffocation. Whenever possible, prefer to buy blankets made of Cotton fabric.
Make Sure It Is Easy to Clean
Last but certainly not least, always buy a machine-washable and quickly dryable blanket for your little one who will be making blanket dirt oftentimes. An easy-to-clean blanket saves your lot of time and efforts, especially when you have your hands full with your little bundle of joy.
Swaddling Blankets from Second Contributor
Researchers have found that a baby sleeps better when he/she is swaddled with a baby blanket. The risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) also reduces if babies are swaddled with blankets. It gives warmness, security and comfort to your baby when he/she sleeps. So choosing the ideal baby blanket for swaddling your baby is of great importance.
You should focus on some major factors before choosing the blanket.
Safety of your baby should be the prime concern. Overheating and swaddling tightly are two things that should be avoided. The fabric of the swaddle blanket must be breathable and lightweight to ensure that air can circulate through the blanket so that your baby doesn’t feel hot. The fabric must be stretchable in order make sure that your baby can move without any discomfort. Your baby should be given the chance to move freely.
It is better if you choose organic baby blankets for swaddling your baby. Organic blankets are made from purely organic materials which don’t contain pesticides and other harmful chemicals.
The skin of your baby is very soft and sensitive. Slightest amount of toxic chemicals might cause allergy and other skin and health problems to your baby. So you should check properly before buying any product of a particular brand whether their products are safe for your baby or not. You can research on the web to get some help in this regard. You can read reviews about a particular product and get some idea about products of different brands.
The size of the blanket is another important factor. Usually swaddle blankets are triangular and square in shape. Often they are over sized to enable you to wrap the blanket few times over your baby. But it should not be so big that it becomes too heavy and create problems to your baby. Besides, if the blanket is too big, you will face difficulty while carrying it with you when you go for outing.
Another thing that you need to consider is that the blanket should be machine-washable or hand-washable as you will need to wash them frequently.
The design and color of the baby blanket is up to your personal choice. Different persons have different choices. Your choice may not match with me. So you can buy any design and color as your wish but it is always better to buy something modest and attractable. So think about the tips given to you before choosing the blanket for swaddling your little one.