You want your little one to stay warm and comfortable, especially during frigid winter months, and a baby bunting might be just the answer you're looking for. The bag encases your baby in thick fabric, leaving just a small part of her face peeking out, and it can be used in a car seat or stroller with ease. However, while baby bunting bags are warm for your baby and convenient for you, they aren't a completely safe option. Some alternatives are safer for your baby and just as easy for you to use.
Baby bunting bags resemble tiny sleeping bags. They can be wrapped entirely around a car seat or stroller, and they have slots for the car seat or stroller straps to be threaded through. Other baby bunting bags are wrapped around the baby and are similar to a swaddling blanket, but much thicker. The primary purpose of a baby bunting bag is to add warmth to your baby's environment when she's on the go. They're especially common during the winter, particularly in areas where subfreezing temperatures are common.
The largest danger associated with a baby bunting bag is the risk that the fabric will cover your baby's face and cause suffocation. The bunting bags are a risk because they're made from such thick fabric that your baby wouldn't be able to get enough oxygen if the material fell over her nose and mouth. You shouldn't add items, including bunting bags, to your baby's car seat because it poses other safety risks, as well, according to HealthyChildren.org. Don't use bags, pads or any other items unless they are part of your car seat or are sold by the same manufacturer. Doing so increases your baby's risk of injury or death. Furthermore, bunting bags haven't been tested for use with car seats, so not enough evidence exists suggesting that they can be used safely in these instances.
A thin receiving blanket is one alternative to a baby bunting bag. While it's not as thick and won't provide as much warmth, it's far less likely to pose a suffocation hazard. A sleep sack is another option that's much safer than a baby bunting bag. A sleep sack usually has holes for your baby's arms and head, and many are made with sleeves. You put your baby's entire body in a sleep sack, but her face is free of any material, which warms her body, but drastically reduces the risk of suffocation.
If you use a receiving blanket or other thin blanket, tuck it tightly around your baby's body, which reduces the risk that your baby will move and pull it over her face. If she tends to move her arms around while she snoozes, tuck the blanket under her armpits and then tightly around her torso and legs, leaving her arms free. Only use sleep sacks that resemble shirts because they reduce the chances that any cloth will move and cover your baby's nose and mouth. Use a sleep sack that has slots built in for a seat belt or a stroller strap. Your baby will stay warm, and she'll be as safe as possible, too.