Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Babywearing Safety and Form

So it's evident from my posts and pictures I thoroughly enjoy wearing my kiddos. Baby carriers are fun and functional not to mention the perfect thing for a mom to collect!!

I often get asked questions on carriers and wearing so I thought I'd put my thoughts into a few posts!!

Let's get started with safety. Proper baby wearing can be both safe and beneficial. It often calms upset children, encourages bonding, and offers comfort to both mom and baby. The main thing to remember is that if there is a task you wouldn't do while holding your baby, don't do it while wearing. Bike riding, skiing, even lawn mowing are all not recommended while wearing a child.

Keep babies' airway open at all times and do not allow their chin to compress to their chest. Baby should be close and snuggled against your chest all while high enough to kiss. Their backs need to be supported. A great baby carrier mimics the position you would hold your baby in naturally with your arms.

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In the past there have been large scale recalls of pouch or bag sling carriers. These types aren't inherently dangerous but they do easily lend themselves to poor carrying techniques. If you choose to use such a carrier please practice and be certain baby is in the carrier safely. You can find a local baby wearing chapter which would be happy to help you learn to use your carrier in person!!

Hip Dysplasia Institute

Soft structured carriers (SSC's) are a very versatile and popular carrier. They can be found in all the big box stores with more brands available online.  While wearing a baby upright in an SSC, it is perfectly safe to allow a baby's legs to spread out from birth on provided they are comfortable doing so. If they are not ready to do so, baby's legs can be tucked and froggy positioned provided they aren't bearing weight on their legs. A great way to do this is by use of a small blanket/burp cloth, etc. as a seat for them. This isn't my photo but we find this positioning perfect!! Some popular brands of SSC's include ERGObaby, Tula, Kinderpack, LILLEbaby, Boba, Lenny Lamb, and many more! They come in all different weights of fabrics to make summer or winter carrying possible too. I'll explore more specific carrier brands in upcoming posts. 

I can't find the original source for this as it's been saved a bunch on Pinterest and other sites and I myself have done the same. If it's your please let me know and I'll give you credit!

Avoid carriers which dangle baby off your front. They tend to be uncomfortable for both wearer and baby. They don't allow for the proper M positioning for hips which places baby's bum below they knees as shown below. he Hip Dysplasia Institute has great graphics I'll be including to show positioning! These carriers don't cause hip dysplasia as has been often rumored they just can exacerbate it if already present and aren't ideal.

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If you own such a carrier there are ways to make it more ergonomic for baby's hips and your back. Using a scarf to position baby is a great hack!

Photo Source

Whatever your budget and whatever you carrier use it safely and remember to #wearallthebabies!!!

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