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US mom living in Sweden scolded for swaddling baby

Americans collectively gasp reading that swaddling is frowned upon in Sweden. In the United States one of the first things the hospital does after a baby is born is to swaddle the newborn nice and snug in a receiving blanket, completing the look with a tiny hat. New moms practice swaddling on unsuspecting cats or teddy bears in preparation for the baby's arrival.

Imagine the surprise of an American mom that gave birth in Sweden being told to never swaddle her baby again. Surely the midwife must've been mistaken, assuming something else was going on. Miranda Hudgens recently posted a reenactment of her experience giving birth at a Swedish hospital to social media where it went viral.

In the video, Hudgens is holding her swaddled baby when the midwife comes in and asks what she's doing, while looking disgusted. The mom explains she's swaddling the baby. Shortly after the midwife leaves, Hudgens' husband tells her that the midwife said "not to do that to the baby anymore."

When the new mom inquires why she isn't allowed to swaddle the baby, her husband responds, "she said it could kill the baby. Yeah, she said we don't do that to babies in this country."

This is the complete opposite of what Americans are taught. Swaddling is seen as a means to help the baby feel secure and calm but in Sweden it's viewed as a dangerous practice. In the comments one mom gave insight into the reason swaddling is discouraged in the nordic country.

"I was reprimanded for it here in Sweden. She said that swaddling = too deep sleep = increased risk for SIDS," the commenter reveals.

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is an area that is continually being researched and while there are factors that increase the chances of SIDS, there is currently no definitive cause. When it comes to swaddling, the increase of SIDS and suffocation increase if the swaddled baby is placed on its stomach to sleep according to Children's Hospital Los Angeles|The Saban Research Institute.

In another study published by the National Library of Medicine, points out that the previous study that stated swaddling increases the risk of SIDS was not peer reviewed and did not provide information on if the swaddled babies were placed on their stomachs or backs for sleep.


And this is how I found out the Swaddling is super frowned up in Sweden #swedenvsusa #americanlivinginsweden #newmom #deliveryroomstories #swaddlingbaby #swaddling #firsttimemom

In the end Hudgens decided not to swaddle, "for those wondering I decided not to swaddle after leaving the hospital and doing more research. The midwife could of been nicer though."

Every parent has to do what they think is best with the information they have. Child birthing and child rearing practices can vary widely from country to country. While in Sweden they frown upon swaddling, co-sleeping with babies until they're school age is commonly practiced. But in America co-sleeping is strongly discouraged while swaddling is commonly practiced.

It's also normal for people in Scandinavian countries to leave their babies outside in freezing temperatures, whereas in America that would be considered neglect. So while it can be shocking to find out what people do in other countries and cultures, it's important to remember not to compare. Everybody's just doing the best that they can with children that are all going to grow into toddlers that eat lint covered snacks they found under the couch.

This article originally appeared on 12.12.23