Picture this: you’re a new parent, sleep-deprived and trying to juggle all the responsibilities that come with caring for a newborn. You need to get things done, but you also want to keep your little one close and provide them with the comfort and security they need.
That’s where babywearing comes in! It’s the perfect solution for hands-free parenting that also promotes bonding and provides numerous benefits for both you and your baby.
I am a huge advocate for babywearing and all the amazing benefits of it! So let’s dive into the wonderful world of babywearing and explore all the fun and practical ways it can make your life as a parent a little bit easier (and a lot more snuggly).
Benefits of Babywearing
Babywearing promotes a close bond between you and your baby. I loved always having my son with me. In all honesty my birth experience was very traumatic, and I didn’t get the chance to really have that bonding time with him in those first few days. What really helped me heal and feel close to my baby was holding him close and always having him with me. Babywearing really was the perfect solution for this.
The closeness was not only comforting to me, but it helped Carter sleep so much better! After watching me carry him around all day, my husband wanted a turn too! He also loved the opportunity to continue working during the day and still have time with our baby. He called it their “guy time” together.
I know we all would love to just snuggle our babe all day long, but unfortunately life requires productivity at some point. Babywearing allows you to be hands-free and productive, while still keeping your baby close. This is especially useful if you have other children to care for, are running errands, or even work from home. Once I figured out how to babywear properly and safely, I felt like I was truly able to get my life back and it helped me heal Immensely postpartum.
Keeping your baby close to your breast is not only good for stimulating milk production, but also for encouraging your baby to breastfeed. I was never able to figure this out entirely, but I have several friends who found it both convenient and comfortable to breastfeed their baby while still in the carrier. Now if that isn’t super mom multitasking then I don’t know what is!
The motion of holding your baby close and moving around is similar to the motion they felt while inside your belly. Babywearing can help soothe your newborn by helping them fall asleep easier and stay asleep longer. If you have a newborn who enjoys cat napping, babywearing can help improve their naps and get them on a manageable schedule.
Reduces the Risk of Flat Head Syndrome
While I did not have any concerns of flat head syndrome with my son, I was concerned about the possibility of my baby developing it. Babywearing is one of the number one way to help prevent flat head syndrome (Read more here). To sum it up, keeping pressure off the back of their head by reducing the amount of time they lay on their back can prevent their head from becoming misshapen. Along with tummy time, babywearing is the perfect way to accomplish that.
Closeness to a parent and the comfort of being held can soothe a baby and reduce fussiness. If you have a baby suffering from colic, babywearing can reduce their crying through comfort. Holding them close allows them to hear your heartbeat, smell your scent, feel your breathing, and the warmth of your skin which are all sensations they felt while in the womb.
Tips and Tricks for Babywearing
Babywearing definitely is a learning curve, and it is important to do it properly for the safety of both you and your baby. Here are some of the best tips I received when first trying to figure it out:
- Choose the right carrier: There are many different types of carriers available, including wraps, slings, mei tais, and structured carriers. It’s important to choose a carrier that is comfortable for both the parent and the baby and fits well.
- Practice at home: Before venturing out in public with your baby in a carrier, practice at home first. This will help you get comfortable with the carrier and learn how to adjust it properly.
- Follow the instructions: Each carrier has specific instructions for use. It’s important to follow these instructions carefully to ensure that the carrier is safe for both the parent and the baby.
- Start with shorter periods: If you and your baby are new to babywearing, start with shorter periods of time and gradually increase the duration as you both get more comfortable.
- Check your baby’s positioning: It’s important to ensure that your baby is positioned correctly in the carrier. The baby’s head should be supported and the carrier should be snug, but not too tight.
- Be mindful of your posture: Babywearing can be comfortable for the parent, but it’s important to be mindful of your posture to prevent back pain or discomfort. Stand up straight, engage your core, and adjust the carrier as needed to distribute the baby’s weight evenly.
My Favorite Baby Carriers
Now that we’ve talked about all the benefits and how to properly babywear, I want to share some of my favorite carriers!
For the newborn phase I preferred to use more of the wrap and sling style carriers. There are plenty of great brands and style to choose from but here are some of my recommendations:
Solly Baby Wrap
By far my favorite is the Solly Baby Wrap! It comes in so many fun patterns and colors that are perfect to fit any style. I love how breathable and stretchy they were, but they also felt super secure when I was carrying my baby. I loved the little pocket they used on the end to hide the safety label! It worked great to fold my wrap up in and keep it clean and free from knots and wrinkles.
These wraps are best for babies 8 to 25 pounds according to Solly’s website. I used mine up until my son was about 6 months old and around 17 pounds at that time. I definitely could have used it longer, but my son preferred to be outward facing at that point and it is not recommended to babywear your baby that way in just a wrap.
Another great wrap for babywearing is the Moby baby wrap. It is very similar to the Solly Baby wrap and is great if you are on a tighter budget. I found both products very comparable and would recommend you browse both sites and see which patterns and fabrics stand out to you!
On their website, MobyWrap.com, they have an awesome education section all about how to best wear your baby in all types of carriers. I recommend any mom check out this site to learn all about the proper babywearing techniques to ensure you have the best experience possible.
Moby also has an awesome selection of sling wraps and baby carriers to hold your baby in from birth through the first several years of life!
When it comes to a structured carrier, my recommendation is always the Ergo Baby carriers. Now I will be honest, they are a bit more on the expensive side but my personal opinion is you get what you pay for! I bought mine on a Black Friday sale and I plan on using it for everyone one of my babies if I can. Think of it as an investment!
I have the Ergo Baby Omni 360 Carrier which can be used from newborn phase all the way up to 4 years of age. The design is so ergonomic for babies (hence the company name, they are made to protect your baby’s hips) and very comfortable for the wearer! Even when my son started to get pretty heavy to carry, this carrier balanced his weight and honestly took a lot of pressure off my back and shoulder. It even had safety locks on the straps and a little pouch on the bottom to hold anything extra we may need.
Carter just loves his carrier and gets so excited when he sees us pull it out to use! It seriously has been the perfect carrier for us and I am so excited to continue using it for our future babies.
This is just the carrier that I have experience with, but there are so many awesome options on the website to fit any lifestyle. Take the quiz on their home page to see which carrier is right for you!
Babywearing is a game-changer for new moms. It provides a multitude of benefits, from bonding and breastfeeding to hands-free parenting and improved sleep. But beyond the practical benefits, babywearing is also a lot of fun! There’s something special about being able to keep your little one close while still being able to tackle your daily tasks with ease. Whether you’re wearing your baby while grocery shopping, taking a walk in the park, or even doing some light exercise, babywearing can help you feel more connected to your baby and more empowered as a parent.
So go ahead, try out different carriers and find the one that works best for you and your baby. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or advice from other babywearing moms, and remember to always follow proper safety guidelines. With a little practice and patience, babywearing can become a natural and enjoyable part of your daily routine.
As a new mom, you’re already juggling a lot, but with babywearing, you can add a new layer of comfort, convenience, and connection to your parenting journey. So, strap on that carrier, give your little one a kiss on the cheek, and embrace the magic of babywearing!