January 4, 2017 by Polarn O. Pyret
Did you know that it is custom for Swedes to put there babes outside for nap time? Babies sleep on average three times longer if you let them nap outdoors in their pram. Babies who get the chance to nap outdoors tend to be healthier and more active, and have better appetites. Here are our tips for the right way to dress your baby for their pram in winter.
The right way to dress your baby
Research shows that babies will wake up if they feel cold in their pram, so if your baby is not warm enough they will let you know. But if they’re wearing the right amount of clothes, your baby will be warm enough and can sleep for longer.
Layer 1 – the clothes next to the skin that keep the body dry. Avoid dressing your baby in cotton in cold weather, as cotton will chill a baby who sweats and gets damp. Use e.g. a bodysuit and long johns/leggings in wool, which absorbs and releases moisture.
Layer 2 – the clothes that keep the body warm. Fleece or wool is a good choice here.
Our windfleece overall is a practical baby garment with no gaps.
Layer 3 – the clothes that keep the cold and wind out. We recommend a warm winter overall in a windproof fabric that protects the baby from the wind and damp. A sleeping bag works well too if you prefer.
Mittens – if your baby’s hands are already protected by their PO.P all-in-one’s foldover cuffs or sleeping bag, they won’t need mittens. But check the weather: if it’s really cold outside, your baby may need mittens as well.
Slippers/socks – A pair of wool socks keep little feet cosy in a sleeping bag/under foldover leg cuffs. You can also use fleece slippers or pram shoes.
Hat – one of the most important items of clothing, as a lot of body heat escapes via the head. A helmet hat in wool is sufficient if the baby is lying in a sleeping bag or has a padded overall with a hood.
Too hot or too cold?
Be careful not to dress your baby too warmly. Feel the back of the baby’s neck to assess how warm they are and adjust their clothing accordingly.
When is it too cold to go outside?
Experts usually set ten degrees below freezing point as the limit. But there are no hard and fast rules – it’s up to you to decide what’s best for you and your baby. Remember to factor in damp air and wind chill when you make your decision. It feels much colder in the winter when the wind blows and very damp air can also chill your baby.
It makes sense to limit the amount of time a newborn baby spends sleeping outdoors in the first few weeks.
Always keep an eye on the pram and check the baby frequently. Don’t cover the pram completely, as it’s important the baby enjoys a good flow of air. A rain cover can also make the air in the pram unpleasantly warm and stuffy. A general recommendation is not to let a baby sleep outdoors for longer than three hours at a time.