How to Sleep Safely
Camping with Baby Series - Blog Post #3
A question that parents most frequently ask me when it comes to camping with their baby is “How do I make sure they are warm enough for sleep?” My husband and I have figured out a basic “guide” to dressing our daughter and have also learned that we had to just get out there and test it out to know how she was most comfortable. We pack extra layers just in case but now have a good system down.
For cooler night temps in the 50-60 degree range, here’s my base guide I use:
- A long sleeved onesie.
- Long sleeved footed pjs.
- A pair of socks.
- An infant sleeping bag, bunting, or a higher TOG sleep sack. We used an ergoBaby 3.5 TOG sleep sack which was MUCH cheaper than a sleeping bag and works great.
- Mittens. Some brands of pjs, sleep sacks, or buntings have built in mitts that can be used instead.
- A comfortable beanie.
- If you use disposable diapers, a cloth diaper cover like a Thirsties Duo Wrap over baby’s disposable can prevent leaking and save you from changing soiled clothes in the middle of the night!
Wool or synthetic fibers are best for temp regulation and moisture wicking, but don’t let access to those materials deter you. We’ve used all different types of fibers for car camping and had comfortable nights.
What about the sleeping situation in the tent? There are many ways to do this, and I’ll share how my family (that bed shares at home) does this, as well as a way to have baby in their own space if that’s not your jam.
- Inside our tent, we have a warm double inflatable sleeping pad and a double sleeping bag. After my husband and I get situated in the sleeping bag, we bring baby in between us, on top of the sleeping bag (not in it), dressed as described above.
- If you prefer baby to sleep in their own space and have the room for it in your tent, I know many parents that will set up baby in an in-bed cosleeper above their heads in the tent. Keep in mind that they won't have your added body heat so you may have to adjust clothing accordingly.
Lastly, as tempting as it is, it’s important not to overdress. I made this mistake on our first outing. I’ve learned to check my baby’s neck throughout the night to gauge her temperature. Sweating and heat rash are my usual indicators that she’s overdressed. If she was cold, her neck typically felt cold or she nearly woke up in protest.
Make sure you pack an extra set of pjs, swaddles, and blankets. You never know when a leak or blowout will hit and while camping, it's nice to be prepared.
Until next time,