Here is an excerpt of a more comprehensive guest post on my doula blog called Babywearing 101.
I recently have gotten the itch to learn more about babywearing. Yeah yeah, I know. My kids are 8 & 11 and I have no intention of having another baby. None. Don’t even think about suggesting it, not gonna happen (now that I’ve cleared that up, we may continue this blog post!) With a close friend of mine having just had her sweet baby boy, I decided it was PERFECT timing for me to learn more!
Sidenote- When my kids were little, I had a Maya pouch & a Moby wrap. Essentially, these were the latest/greatest and really awesome people used them and because HEAVEN FORBID you got one from a big box store like Target or Walmart (like a baby bjorn or the later recalled playtex hip hammock.) Seriously, I was one of a very few people I knew at the time that used cloth diapers, too. Yes, I was so hippie back in the day.
I digress, back to the topic here! One of the things my students ask about is carriers. And I feel clueless. I mean seriously, when I went to look online for a wrap for my friend’s new baby, I was bombarded with amazing images of attachment parenting at its most basic and about thirty-seven bazillion different types of carriers, slings, wraps, pouches, whatever-they-are-called babywearing gizmos. I turned to the online community locally, a chapter of Babywearing International, and discovered a friend of mine was finishing up her testing to become a volunteer educator (who knew that was even an option?!) I asked her to write up a blog post for me & she graciously accepted.
You can read the full post on my doula blog. Here are her top four tips & reminders as you go to choose the right carrier for you.
SAFETY TIPS TO REMEMBER
Excerpt from the Dayspring Doula blog guest post by Bizzy Burslie:
- Cradle carry is for active nursing only. Not every mom or baby can nurse upright so if you have to use the cradle carry to nurse please do! But when baby is done, move them back to a tummy to tummy hold. It sucks when your darling falls asleep nursing and don’t want to wake them, but the chance of your child suffocating in a cradle hold is not worth the few minute it might take you to move them and soothe them back to sleep.
- Forward facing positions are fine. Lots of parents say their child likes to look out and around 3-4 months that is usually the case. Hip carriers are a great option for curious babies. Back carries are really great too if it’s appropriate. If your baby just really prefers being out in front, make sure it’s for a limited period of time. Babies are easily over stimulated and can get overwhelmed in a forward facing position. Never let your child sleep forward facing. The natural shape of your child’s back is not fully supported in forward facing carries.
- Back carries are possible in many carriers, but use safety and caution. SSCs are only for back carries with babies who can sit for short periods unassisted. Mei Tais can be used for babies who sit assisted, a.k.a. have excellent head and trunk control (rolling over). Woven wraps can be used for back carries for newborns IF you are experienced wrapper proficient at front and hip carries. Ring slings should only be used for back carries in a pinch by experienced back wrappers. Pouches are not OK for back carries. Stretchy wraps should never be used for back carries unless their manufacturer specifically mentions it is OK (Moby is NOT approved for back carries). Finally, use a spotter and stand next to a couch or bed until you are comfortable getting baby on your back unassisted.
- Your baby needs to be properly positioned. Baby’s head should always be high enough for you to kiss. Baby’s airway should never be obstructed by the carrier. Be sure to keep baby’s chin off its chest. Keep baby in a position you can monitor their breathing. Your baby’s legs should be in a “M” position with knees elevated above their bottom in whatever carrier you choose.
Are you a babywearer? Are you interested in learning more? Connect with me on Facebook & let’s learn more together. A special thanks to all the local moms & dads who posted pictures on FB with permission to use their images babywearing for this post!