There are a wide variety of benefits to babywearing including helping to reduce overstimulation and making it easier to get things done around the house. Babywearing can provide soothing to an infant which can be of particular use for children who exhibit symptoms of colic. When utilizing baby carriers, proper positioning is paramount to the child’s safety. As such, below you will find the basics of using baby carriers.
Practice Makes Perfect
Most baby carriers seem simple enough to use when you only read the instructions. However, the execution of these instructions often proves tricky. As such it is recommended that you practice using your carrier with a doll or teddy bear before wearing your baby. Practicing particular carries regularly will help you to build muscle memory that can make babywearing much easier. Make sure that both you and your child are both well rested and content before attempting a new carry.
Proper positioning in a carrier is essential for protecting a baby’s bone health, growth, and development. After birth, an infant insert should be used for the first several months if a soft structured carrier is being used. When wrapping a newborn, there are particular positions that should be used. One concern surrounding the use of baby carriers is hip dysplasia or the general instability of the hip joint. To prevent hip dysplasia, your baby’s knees should be at the same level or higher than their hips. When using a carrier with your baby is in a sitting position, the fabric should stretch from knee to knee to support their thighs.
General Tips for Using Baby Carriers
Below are some useful tips and resources to help you safely wear your baby.
- Baby’s chin should NEVER touch his chest. This can restrict the airway.
- Never allow a baby’s head and face to be covered by fabric.
- Never jog, run, jump or participate in any activity that subjects baby to a similar shaking or bouncing motion.
- Never use a carrier while riding in the car.
- Use only carriers that are appropriate for baby’s age and weight.1
- Always make sure baby can breathe. No carrier can ensure that baby has an open airway; that’s your job
- Babywearing International
- International Hip Dysplasia Institute