“So the child learns life within human arms. It learns to eat…to laugh, to play, to listen, to watch, to dance, to feel frightened or relax, in human arms.“ ~ Margaret Mead, on Balinese childrearing practices
As a mom of 3 I have a lot of experience babywearing. I still babywear the twins and we’re going strong at 18 months. I carried my son until he was around 3 years old. His little legs would tire from all the walking and he’d ask “Momma. Can you hold me?” How could I say no? So I invested in a toddler sized carrier for our daily trips. My adventure in babywearing all began with Beco when I reviewed their carriers, then I began to work with many other brands, providing reviews for their carriers as well.
What is babywearing?
Babywearing is the simple practice of carrying your baby/toddler in a sling, Mei Tai (MT), wrap or soft structured carrier (SSC). There are many on the market and it can seem overwhelming to choose just one. My suggestions would be for you to find a babywearing group in your community. (I bet you have one! Visit the Babywearing in Canada group on Facebook for babywearing resources.)
Here are just some of the benefits of babywearing:
- It decreases the risk of pagiocephaly (flat head syndrome) and it’s also a great alternative to tummy time.
- Babywearing helps premature babies gain weight. Also known as Kangaroo care, when baby is worn skin-to-skin, the baby is often calmer.
- Sheer convenience – you can be hands free and get around town stroller-free.
- Provides closeness and security; babies worn regularly cry up to 40% less!
- It also provides magic sleeping baby dust, as baby is familiar with your rhythm while you move around.
- It can strengthen your pelvic floor and core as well, Mom!
- You will also get lots of snuggles and kisses (the best part of babywearing!)
- It’s also the easiest way to soothe your infant/toddler.
Tips and things to consider for better babywearing:
- Baby is high enough that you can kiss the top of their head
- Keep chin off chest when wearing your newborn until the child has proper head control. Always pay attention to this regardless, whether in a carrier, stroller, swing or car seat.
- Keep baby in an upright position
- Double check that baby’s knees are bent higher than their bum for a comfy “M” position. This is for baby’s comfort.
- Try to make sure you have knee-to-knee coverage so baby’s hips are properly supported.
I am not here to convince you to babywear but I love the warmth, the closeness and the emotional richness coming from my core that makes me feel complete when I am babywearing. Imagine that feeling. Babies are eager to look around and baby is up at your level to explore and to look around at the world.
You cannot spoil a child. Your baby wants to be held and to be close. It’s not a coincidence that baby stops fussing as soon as you pick them up.
I think that, in a nutshell, is a great reason to explore babywearing.
Mom, Blogger, doula in training and babywearing junkie. Erica Ashmore is a stay at home mom to three in Toronto and loves sharing with her readers the best products for the whole family. Find her over at her blog, Mama Ash.