Babywearing Basics: Part 1

Photo courtesy of Sew Katie Did

By Mirranda Reinhardt for Pregnancy Awareness Month®

Being a new mama is tough! There always seems to be so much that needs to be done. Many of us have help from friends or family in the early days, but things go back to normal by the time baby reaches a couple of months old. Our busy way of life doesn’t leave us much time for a “babymoon” but most moms still feel the strong instinctual urge to keep their babies close to them.

For moms who have daily chores and/or other little ones to care for, wearing baby in a sling, wrap or other carrier can be a lifesaver. Babywearing is just catching on in the United States, but it’s been commonplace in other countries all over the world for centuries. With baby close by, mom is free to move about and do all the things she needs to do. Many moms find it easy to discreetly nurse while baby is in a carrier. Keep in mind though, that your individual success with nursing while baby wearing will depend on a variety of factors so what works for one mom may not work as well for you.

Babywearing has a calming effect on most little ones; my babies always fell right to sleep when snuggled up in a sling or wrap. Babies who are worn can hear their caregiver’s heartbeat, smell them, and feel the warmth of their body. I’ve even found baby wearing helpful when dealing with a sick toddler who wants nothing more than to be held by mommy all day.

Worn correctly, a sling or wrap is very safe and positions baby in a way that keeps their spine aligned properly and their nose and mouth free to breathe. Choosing a carrier that fits you and your baby may seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Over the next couple of months I’ll introduce you to a variety of baby carriers, including some of my very favorites. If you’re ready to get started right away, call around to local baby boutiques; many times they’ll have an assortment of carriers available for sale.

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