For centuries parents have been sleeping their babies in the natural fibres of wool to keep them warm and comfortable, and there is now scientific evidence that sleeping on or under wool actually improves the quality of sleep and helps little ones thrive better.
Research shows that the rate of weight gain in underweight newborns was 61% higher when sleeping on a wool underlay compared to a cotton sheet. Jaundiced newborns sleeping on wool were more settled when sleeping compared to those on cotton – around 30% of babies on wool cried compared with 67% on cotton.
Researcher Dr Paul Swan, from the University of Sydney, said: "Not so long ago sleeping under wool bedding was the norm, and science is now rediscovering the benefits of sleeping in wool. Maybe it is not a coincidence because wool regulates your body temperature far better, keeping you in what is known as 'the thermal comfort zone'. You therefore not only fall asleep quicker, sleep longer, but also have deeper, better quality sleep."
If your baby is unsettled, one reason for their unrest could be down to the environment they’re sleeping in and the type of bedding parents are using in their cot.
Simply sleeping your baby in the natural properties that merino wool provides could make all the difference to a good quality sleep and helping your little one to thrive.
Merino wool is naturally breathable
In contrast to synthetics, wool is an active fibre that reacts to changes in the body’s temperature, keeping the wearer comfortable. Accordingly, wool garments are one of the most breathable of all the common natural fibres types.
Merino wool has natural temperature regulating properties
Babies are not as adaptable as adults to temperature change. Because infants and children have a higher surface area to mass ratio than adults, they can lose heat rapidly, as much as four times more quickly than adults.
When babies are cold-stressed, they use energy and oxygen to generate warmth. Studies have found that by sleeping babies in merino wool and thus keeping babies at optimal temperatures, neither too hot or too cold, they can conserve energy and build up reserves. When using merino wool, baby’s temperature is regulated and maintained and subsequently babies will become more relaxed, gain weight faster and sleep longer.
Merino Wool has natural moisture regulating properties
Merino is one of Nature’s most amazing fibres. It breathes and controls moisture which means it has the unique ability to maintain the ideal temperature between body and bedding. Unlike any other fabric Merino has the capacity to remove large amounts (up to 35% of its own weight) of moisture from the skin surface, keeping baby dry and comfortable all night.
"Enjoying good sleep has become increasingly difficult in modern times, and so anything that helps is great for your mental and physical health." Dr Paul Swan, from the University of Sydney says.
Kim Snel, owner of SnugBags Merino for Kids says: "We acknowledge the importance of sleep and the amazing qualities and benefits of merino wool. We have specifically designed products that are made using only the finest merino wool to ensure a better night’s sleep for little ones. Because we know when baby sleeps, everyone sleeps. A well-rested baby is a happy baby, which also makes for well-rested and happy parents."
Visit SnugBags extensive range of merino baby & toddler sleeping bags here.
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Kim is the owner of SNUGBAGS - Merino for Kids. Together with her partner James and their little girl Neeva Rose, she lives in a little beach town called Piha on the West Coast in New Zealand. They love surfing, building sandcastles and all things natural and organic.