The Benefits of Babywearing: Safety Tips

As with all things baby, this concept also comes with safety tips in wearing your baby properly. Baby’s airway must be open at all times. By wearing baby upright, with their head close enough to kiss, you should be able to observe baby’s breathing. Their chin should be off their chest at all times. It is recommended that baby should only be in a horizontal or cradle position while feeding, otherwise baby should remain in an upright position. The baby’s head and neck should be properly supported in the carrier. A baby’s knees should be higher than its bottom in a squat position against the belly. This will change as baby develops into toddler stage and will not be attainable or necessary. A soft carrier (i.e. ergonomic, Mei Tai, Ring Sling, a wrap, or Moby Wrap) are good options for newborns shifting into toddler years. Always inspect your carriers for any loose threading, holes, or worn fabrics.  It is always recommended that you purchase your carrier from a reputable source, although there are quite a few local communities that can offer trades and safe hand-me-downs for new mamas as well. Be sure to practice using your carrier with a spotter in a safe space, over a couch or bed preffered. Always practice good ol’ common sense- if it doesn’t feel right than it’s probably not safe for you or baby.

There are so many styles and shapes out there, it’s just a matter of finding the right one for you. Thankfully with resources like Babywearing International, we can find local chapters that can assist you through this process. See below for links and resources.

I will also say with every blog I post, there are many interpretations to parenting. I encourage you to use this information to find what works for you, and don’t allow for it to determine what you are doing wrong. There is no wrong way-only your way.

 This concludes our monthly topic for July! As promised I will always list my sources for each month. Please feel free to be a part of the conversation!

http://babywearinginternational.org/what-is-babywearing/

http://www.bwiaustin.org/

http://babywearinginternational.org/about-bwi/chapters/

http://www.skintoskincontact.com/susan-ludington.aspx

The Benefits of Babywearing: For Everyone

 

Babywearing allows for a deeper connection between daddy and baby. Mommies get to wear baby inside for 9 months, so this gives daddy the opportunity to have such an influence on their new baby. This is also highly recommended for adoptive parents, as well as mothers enduring postpartum depression. Baby is able to get used to a parent’s voice, heartbeat, their facial expressions, and unique gestures.

Babywearing also allows for the more practical things in your life to take place. You can keep baby close, and still have your hands free. This allows for play time with the elder sibling, cleaning around the house, and prepping dinner. Imagine the freedom in a crowded neighborhood gathering. No need to push a stroller through large crowds of people, and you can go where a stroller can’t. This makes for nature hikes, and less complicated trips to and from airports.

So, what kind of baby carrier should you buy, and which one is best for you? Next week we discuss a few types of carriers and safety tips for wearing baby. 

The Benefits of Babywearing: Kangaroo Care

Last week we discussed the fundamentals of babywearing in your own home. Now, we will see it's benefits in a medical setting. The US has been fortunate enough to have the technology to support preterm infants. Other countries have had to come up with less costly ways to support these preemies in need. 

 Often referred to as Kangaroo Care (K-Care), hospitals with small budgets in areas like Guatemala have utilized K-Care in lieu of incubators. According to a study done by Susan Ludington at UCLA, having baby close allows mother’s body to regulate to baby’s needs. Preterm babies are placed between the mother’s breasts inside her clothing. This has shown proof of temperature regulation; it also improves respiratory function. Baby attunes to wearer’s heartbeat, breathing, and movement (walking, reaching, bending). This stimulation has proven faster weight gain, and k-cared babies prove to be healthier than babies who have not endured such stimulation. 

Amazing what the human body is capable of! Next week we continue our discussion on babywearing and how this practice can benefit both parents in the home.

The Benefits of Babywearing: The Basics

Babywearing is the practice of keeping your infant/toddler close to you while you go about your daily routine. This is a practice that was used throughout centuries of developing civilizations. Babywearing has developed over the years as a beneficial practice to understand your baby, facilitate their development, and their physical growth.

 Studies have shown babywearing facilitates a closer connection with your baby’s needs. By having baby close, you will better understand their cues before they feel the need to cry. This instills not only confidence in you as a parent, but confidence in your baby in knowing that they are well taken care of by both mom and dad. A study published by The Journal of Pediatrics shows that babywearing for 3 hours a day reduces crying by 43% overall, and by 53% in the evening hours. That is a huge shift in your baby’s demeanor, and you can see why this will help you be a confident parent. 

 Babywearing is a good tool for a baby that cries each night at the same time for hours at a time. Wearing baby close to you for a few hours a day could be just the thing that breaks the cycle. Next week we will discuss this practice in a medical setting. Babywearing, more commonly called Kangaroo care is all some premi babies have.