Babywearing is a natural parenting practice that is not only advantageous to the parents as it is very beneficial to babies.
The parent and the baby get to bond during babywearing as they get to spend a lot of time with each other as time progresses.
Here are the benefits of babywearing for babies:
Warmth and Close Physical Contact.
Apart from milk, babies need to be close to their moms especially during the newborn stage. This gives them a sense of security as they adjust to the new world around them. Babywearing allows the mother to provide that warm embrace as they can carry their babies for a longer period of time, thanks to the support baby carriers provide.
Less cranky babies.
Babies who are oftenly held feel more secure hence they do not need to cry often to catch their mother’s attention. And since they can snooze anytime while being carried by their mom or caregiver, they tend to be happier.
More access to the breast.
Most baby carriers are designed to make breastfeeding easier so nurslings worn by their mother has easier access to the breasts. In fact, some carriers even provide the nursing cover needed by some mothers who may want to cover up during a nursing session, so in this regard, babywearing can further promote breastfeeding.
Their senses are better stimulated.
Having a good vantage point (versus near ground-level when riding a stroller), stimulates the baby’s visual sense. Other senses also get further activated. Babies get to see everything around them, and they could communicate this easily to their mothers (even through babbling). They can also hear the sounds more and recognize where the sounds are coming from. Being able to listen to adult conversations, as well as observe adult interaction can also help them become more attentive and could even make them smarter and better-adjusted to other people. They can socialize easily too!
They can also touch things that are safe for them to touch exposing them to various textures.
Here meanwhile are the benefits of babywearing for parents:
It allows them to carry on with their tasks.
Chores pile up while a child needs to be nursed, snuggled or carried. Baby wearing allows the mother to do all those and keep her two hands free to do the things she needs to do around the house. For instance she can operate the vacuum cleaner, load laundry in the washing machine, tidy up the house and so on while wearing her baby. Alternately the baby can nurse, sleep, or look around their home while his or her mother is going about the daily chores.
Less hassle when travelling especially when using public transportation.
When you will be riding a bus or a train with your baby, a baby carrier is your best option. You do not need to fold and drag an additional load as you alight and exit trains and buses, paving the way for a stress-free ride. When you no longer need it, some carriers like slings, pouches, and wraps, folds easily and compactly in the baby’s diaper bag.
Get closer to the baby without too much effort.
Since the baby can be worn at all times parents get to spend a lot of time being close to the child without exerting too much effort. You may be running errands, or doing chores but your baby stays close to you.
When your baby is near you especially during the toddler stage there will be fewer chances for them to sustain injuries. Of course, when you are virtually next to them the chances of them getting harmed is lessened. And when they are worn, there is also zero probability for them to get lost wandering around while you are going about your errands.
Now that you know the many benefits of babywearing, you may want to know what to look for in a carrier. Here is a rough guide.
What to look for in a baby carrier:
Make sure the carrier you bought is genuine and has passed safety tests.
There are a lot of imitation products in the market and there is no reason for you to patronize those because these fake carriers pose a safety hazard to your child. Imagine f that buckle broke while you are carrying your child?
Make sure that it is a recommended carrier.
Forward facing carriers are no longer recommended by babywearing organizations as they pose risks to newborns and infants.
Make sure as well that the carrier you will be buying is akin to the weight of your child.
Carriers have weight limits so ensure that your child will be within the weight limit that is specified.
There are a lot of baby carriers in the market and some may be expensive. But know that there are a lot of options out there that are affordable and safe enough to convey your baby.
Here are various types of recommended baby carriers:
- Soft-structured Support Carriers or SSCs — are one of the most popular types of carriers in the market simply because it is quite easy to utilize and come in fun designs. They are relatively easy to wear and usually come in infant and toddler size. It looks like a back-pack bag actually and can be accessorized. Accessories include rain covers, suck pads, drool pads, protective cases and the like. The caveat of buying this type of carrier is that it is one of the most expensive types of carriers in the market.
- Ring Slings — are the most affordable type of recommended baby carriers that can be worn from newborn stage up to toddlerhood. Using a ring sling you can carry your child on your hip, upfront, and even from the back. It also is very light, not too warm on the body, and very easy and compact to fold and keep in the baby’s bag. It is easy to clean and wash too.
- Pouch Slings – These are just like the ring slings, but with lesser learning curve because you will no longer have to thread the fabric into the rings. It is basically ready and easy to use – you just have to wear it and you can out the baby or toddler in! It is very affordable too. The only caveat is the pouch does not adjust to the wearer’s size, which means it cannot be shared among other baby wearers unless they have the same body frame.
- Mei Tai – These are basically modernized Asian-style native carriers that are adjustable, very comfortable to use and can be used for hip, back, and front carry. They come in various designs too, and s not too complicated to use. It also adjusts to the size of the wearer so it can be shared between parents and other caregivers.
- Wraps – This type of baby carrier may have one of the steepest learning curve in terms of mastering the art of wearing but it provides a great deal of comforts especially for babies. They are snuggled as if they are cocooned in a warm embrace. It can also be used in infancy to toddlerhood and also offer a variety of wearing styles which include front, back and hip carries. More importantly it comes in a variety of fabric and fabric designs, making it more attractive to the moms who may end up collecting more than one design.
If you haven’t tried baby wearing, there are shops that are both online and brick or mortar that allows rentals so you may want to explore that option before making a purchase. It will also be in your best interest to o do further research on the ways to safely wear your baby in order to avoid accidents. Join baby wearing groups in your community, and online to further widen your knowledge on babywearing. Such forums will help you maximize the many benefits of babywearing.