Are you on the fence about babywearing?
I know I was before my daughter was born.
I had this image in my head that only certain types of moms were into babywearing and that I would have to embrace a certain lifestyle to babywear. This is not true and there are many benefits of babywearing! I truly believe that babywearing can be for all parents, unless of course you have an injury or condition that prevents it.
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What type of baby carrier should you use?
With my daughter coming home at 4 lbs, she was too small to use our Boba. This led me to purchase a Baby K’tan, which was life changing! I talk a little bit about the K’tan in my post on must have baby gear items.
My husband picked a Mei Tei wrap he wanted to try, without realizing what it really was and then quickly decided this was not for him and returned it. He settled on sharing the Boba with me and is very happy with it.
Once we got the okay from our pediatrician, a must for preemies, babywearing seriously made our lives so much easier.
There are a ton of options for carriers!
Wraps, soft structured carriers, ring slings, and more. Babywearing International goes in depth on different types of carrier options. Since I’m really only familiar with the two that I have, I’ll refer you to their site to learn more.
So what are some benefits of babywearing?
Babywearing makes it possible to get things done that require two hands while satisfying your baby’s need to be held.
Some babies really want to be held all the time. It is great to be close and bond, but sometimes things have to happen – like eating dinner!
My daughter had severe reflux and had to be held upright for thirty minutes after every feeding. Since I was also exclusively pumping, most of our days were taken up between pumping, feeding, and keeping her upright! It became easier when I could put her in the carrier after her bottle and wear her during that time. She would be in a good upright position, and I could go and get some things done!
You can walk your dog!
I see some people walking their dog and pushing their stroller. I tried this once – my dog is not the brightest and would just keep walking into the stroller and getting all tangled up – basically it was a disaster. But I can wear my daughter and have my hands free for the dog and her leash. My daughter loves going to ‘help’ take the dog out, and our carrier makes it easy for her to come along!
My daughter also gets a new perspective of what’s going on.
So often she just wants to see what we are looking at, and when we are wearing her she can do this without feeling like she needs extra help from us.
You can do skin to skin while baby wearing.
As long as your carrier doesn’t get between you and baby, you can babywear without your shirt on and get that skin to skin experience. Skin to skin has many benefits for babies and is something I really enjoyed doing.
You can feed your baby
If you are breastfeeding, it is possible to do so while babywearing with many types of carriers. It may take some practice to get positioning just right, but this can be worth the effort especially when baby just wants to eat all day.
You can exercise
Of course safety is key here but you can go for walks, do squats, and I’ve even seen full body workouts designed for baby wearing mamas.
You can do all sorts of fun things!
We have worn our daughter on hikes, into historic buildings and museums, in downtown cities, sporting arenas – areas that may not be idea for stroller travel.
Baby Wearing Safety
If you are going to wear your baby, there are some key safety guidelines to follow. Of course, you always want to follow the instructions specific to your carrier. Babywearing International has great safety information that you can check out here. They obviously have tons of information on babywearing on their website!
The main thing I learned about safety is the ABC’s
Airway – Make sure that baby has an open airway and can breathe!
Body Positioning – Make sure baby’s head and neck is properly supported and their overall body position is good.
Comfort – You should both be comfortable! If you aren’t or you think baby isn’t, try to make some adjustments.
Another phrase that has stuck out to me in learning about babywearing is ‘close enough to kiss’. If you can easily kiss your baby, then they are close enough for you to monitor easily.
Also, remember to use common sense!
Avoid dangerous situations. I’d say if it’s something you wouldn’t do while holding your baby, then it may not be something you want to do while babywearing.
Babywearing isn’t just for babies!
I still wear my daughter! She’s almost two and I’ve had more than one person say “Isn’t she too old for that?”, but no she isn’t! When she sees me take out the Boba she gets so excited, runs over with her arms out saying ‘up, up, mine!’. She knows it’s her special spot!
When she was little I would wear her a lot more, now it’s mostly when we are doing something where it’s going to be too much walking or not safe for her to be walking.
What do you think about some of the benefits of babywearing?
Are you interested in babywearing now? I know it’s not for everyone, but we really love it. I’ve only covered some of the benefits of babywearing. There’s all sorts of benefits for both parents and babies with babywearing, I’ve heard that babies that are worn may even cry less. I’m sure if you try it you will discover your own benefits, I’d love to hear your thoughts on babywearing so comment below!
If you want to buy a Boba carrier click here.
If you want to buy a Baby K’tan click here.
Click Here to read my full post on why I love my Boba.
And here is my post on my must have baby gear items.