If you swaddle your baby to ensure better sleep, you might want to think again.A lot of people warp clothes around their babies’ body except the face to promote sleep. Otherwise known as Swaddling, this can lead to the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), a research suggests.

Babies swaddled are 38 percent more at risk of dying as a result of SIDS in comparison to the ones who are not, as noted by the researchers in the Journal Paediatrics.

The findings of the analysis have been made public after closely scrutinizing four different studies done over two decades in Australia, United States and the United kingdom. 760 babies who died of SIDS and 1,759 babies with no SIDS were included in the study.

 Lead author Anna S. Pease, research associate, the University of Bristol in England said, “We already know that side and prone sleeping are unsafe for young babies, so it’s always better to put the baby to sleep on his back. It gets all the more important when the parents swaddle their babies.” The best time to stop swaddling is between 4 – 6 months, since this is time when kids start to roll.

The findings of the analysis may encourage parents to ensure that infants sleep on their back, especially when they are swaddled. Swaddled babies who are put to sleep on their stomach were more than ten times at risk of SIDS to the ones sleeping on their back. In a nutshell, the risk of SIDS was minimum in babies sleeping on their backs, moderate in ones sleeping on their sides and maximum in ones sleeping on their stomachs.

 The researchers also threw light on the limitation of the study as different types of swaddling is practised across the globe.The analysis is published in aappublications.org.