Parents face a number of challenges when trying to get their families through the winter period. Planning gifts to give and receive. Arranging to see friends, family, loved ones. Making sure your little ones don’t catch too many colds…
In your battle to keep stress to a minimum and preserve the joys of the season, there’s one thing that can really come to your aid — a warm set of baby pajamas!
In this post, we explore how finding the right baby clothes for your child during colder months can help you to limit their vulnerability to sickness, keep them healthy, support bedtime routines and more.
1. The Final Defence Against the Cold
Newborns and infants don’t have the ability to self regulate their core temperature and have less fat to insulate their organs against cold. They will also store less energy in their bodies to support heat production and won’t have the same ability to shiver, a natural reaction adults and older children rely on to boost blood flow.
As such, it’s recommended that parents recognize their important role in helping to limit exposure to cold elements, both outside and within the home, until your children are old enough to do this themselves.
One of the best ways you can guarantee your child doesn’t get too cold at night is to provide a great set of warm pajamas for your baby or other suitable clothing options for their age as a final line of defence in keeping your little one from getting too cold in winter.
Newborns and infants don’t have the ability to self regulate their core temperature and have less fat to insulate their organs against cold.
The more of your baby’s body you cover, the less chance there will be of cold air reaching them or precious warm air from escaping. This is why bodysuits, all-in-ones and items that cover the feet and hands are highly recommended.
You might think a thick blanket or multiple sheets will solve your problem, however, as we’ve mentioned in other blog posts, it’s not safe to put these baby accessories in your child’s crib until they are over 12 months old.
2. Prevent Illnesses
The immune system naturally matures during infancy but while this is happening, research shows us that babies are much more at risk from many pathogenic viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites.
Keeping them warm, conserving their energy, and improving their ability to sleep (a vital part of baby development) is a sure way to lower the risk of them getting a cold, flu or other illnesses.
A bare chest can expose your baby to a great deal of cold at night, even if you think their bedroom is warm enough. Temperatures can also drop at night to levels that can sap your baby’s heat and make it harder for them to regulate their temperature.
Warm pajamas that lock in heat, prevent cold air from touching your baby and encourage them to rest soundly can keep them more protected against various illnesses such as:
- Colds, coughs and sniffles
- Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)
- Ear infection
- Strep throat
If your baby is crying at night and you think they might be sick, you might find this blog post useful: Why Is Your Baby Crying at Night and What To Do About It
3. Support Better Hygiene
Like an adult, a baby’s skin will continuously shed dead skin cells containing various microorganisms. And yes, this happens when they are sleeping too!
This is not harmful unless bacteria spreads to your baby’s crib sheets and to certain areas of their bodies, leading to infections. Having a pair of pajamas or other appropriate baby sleepwear that you wash regularly will prevent this from happening by keeping any unwanted bacteria away from their sheets.
Of course, you must also wash their sheets regularly, but this combined effort will help to keep your baby’s space hygienic and clean. Any vomit, drool, contaminants and spillages (food, milk etc.) on your baby’s clothes can also be removed more easily from baby pajamas than they can from your baby’s sheets, which you might not have in large supply.
Comfort is not just something that’s nice to have. For babies, it’s a requirement when it comes to getting them off to sleep. And when sleep happens, their bodies are actively recovering from the day’s activities.
Some high quality and warm pajamas for your baby that guarantees comfort will help both you and your baby sleep so you can tackle the various challenges that you both face during winter more easily, such as increased encounters with friends and families and more stimulation than your baby may be used to.
Pajamas that are itchy, baggy, too thin, or generally not comfortable will keep your baby from getting the sleep they need!
Keep It Snug!
Baby pajamas must be snug and not loose-fitting to avoid health risks such as suffocation, according to the National Sleep Foundation. And, snug pajamas also provide warmth more easily to your child as they lock in heat.
When looking for warm pajamas for your baby, make sure that they’re not too loose or baggy!
5. Help Your Baby Settle at Bedtime
The act of putting on your baby’s pajamas can help to signal to them that it’s now time to wind down into sleep mode.
Combined with your normal routine of turning off the lights, relaxing the mood, giving them a bath or any other activity in your nighttime schedule, this can improve their sleep quality and duration.
Baby Sleepwear Options for Winter
Blankets and any loose objects are considered dangerous for babies by health organizations such as the AAP and CDC. Fortunately, there are many clothing options that can still keep your baby warm and cozy no matter what age or developmental stage they’re at.
Swaddling for Newborns
Many newborn respond really well to the swaddle, which can help soothe them and get them off to sleep. It’s also a great way of locking in heat and making sure your baby doesn’t get too cold in the winter months.
There are many premade swaddle wraps such as our Zippy swaddle you can opt for if you want to simplify the process and make sure you always have something on hand that is easy to wrap and suitable for your child.
However, you can also choose to make a swaddle wrap from a piece of lightweight and breathable cotton or muslin material.
Beyond the age of 2 months, it is not recommended that you swaddle due to the safety issues that arise when you do. At this point, it’s important that you transition away from the swaddle to other items like sleep sacks and baby sleepsuits.
Read Our Ultimate Guide for Safe Baby Sleep!
Swaddle Transition Products
Many products are perfect during the transition from the swaddle. This category includes a whole range of baby sleeping bags, sacks and suits that will keep your baby warm, cozy and sufficiently wrapped up so they can get to sleep well.
Our Zipadee-Zip, for example, is designed just for this purpose — offering a kind of womb-like, restrictive comfort for your child without presenting any of the dangers that come with swaddling past the age of 2 months, which include hip dysplasia and SIDS.
If you’d like to learn more about this product, take a look at our guide: How the Zipadee-Zip Works
The Baby Pajama
Used broadly as a term to describe baby clothing, the term baby pajama also implies clothing that is suitable for slightly older children and includes 2-piece garments that are separated into tops and bottoms, as well as all-in-one baby products.
At Sleeping Baby, we don’t leave out older kids who have phased out their baby bodysuits and sleep sacks and therefore offer the popular Flying Squirrel pajamas too. Like all our products, this also comes in a fleece option which is perfect for those colder winter months!
For more guidance on which items to use and when, take a look at our blog post: What Should My Baby Wear to Sleep? — The Right Products for the Right Time
Best Materials for Colder Months
The most important factor when choosing a bodysuit for your baby, other than it being safe and suitable for them to play and sleep in, is that it’s made from the right material. These fabrics should be soft enough that they won’t irritate your baby’s skin while also providing a good amount of insulation. Suitable materials for baby clothes include:
- Cotton blends
Stay Cautious During Winter
It’s not just the cold that poses a threat to your baby during winter. Increased time at home is also the cause of various problems. With radiators on full blast and windows closed, it’s normal for air to become drier and for viruses to inhabit the space your baby spends most of their time.
You might also catch up with friends and family at home rather than outdoors, which can increase the amount of infections and germs in a small confined space. As you would imagine, babies are particularly vulnerable due to all this.
It’s not just the cold that poses a threat to your baby during winter. Increased time at home is also the cause of various problems
In a way, this makes a set of warm baby pajamas even more important. Rather than simply putting the heating on, it’s important to get some fresh air into your child’s room too, meaning temperatures might drop at various points throughout the day. Having a pair of warm clothes to protect your baby while you ventilate and refresh the air can make all the difference.
You also need to make sure your baby doesn’t get too hot as a result of you increasing the temperature of the home with the heating or wrapping them up too much. This can seriously prevent them from sleeping properly and can lead to a number of health issues.
Finding the Best Warm Pajamas for Your Baby in Winter
You shouldn’t find it hard to discover many pajama options for your baby. Our final piece of advice would be to test out different styles and designs for baby jammies and see which one your little one responds well to. Also, “warm” can mean something different depending on where you live, so always take that into account when buying online and read plenty of reviews from other parents.
If you’re living in a relatively moderate climate, then cotton and synthetic blends might do just fine! If you’re facing extremely cold temperatures during winter nights, consider how fleece might be a wiser choice.