Parents have been wearing their babies against their bodies for centuries. An etching was discovered that depicted a mother from Ancient Greece with a baby wrap holding her child to her as she removed the wheat from the chaff. In China the mei tai was first used thousands of years ago for ease in working with your baby near you, and the tradition of the mei tai continues today. While baby wear is trending in the Western world, note it may be another sign of people looking to the past to work toward the future with positive rewards for the family.
When you wear your baby against your body, a bond is created and two heartbeats become one. You and your young baby both benefit in numerous ways from baby wear. There is a proper way to wear the baby for maximum pleasure and safety concerns. These methods of baby wear will change as your child gets older.
There will be many factors to consider as you select your baby wear, and safety guidelines to follow once you begin to use the baby wear.
When to begin
You can safely begin to use baby wear such as a sling or wrap from birth up until when your child weighs around forty pounds. At that point, the weight becomes too much for you to safely carry and maneuver with as you use the baby wear. Wraps and slings are recommended for newborn babies.
As you begin to use a sling or wrap, remember that it may take a few attempts for you and the baby to be comfortable. Our Now Born Baby Wrap is made from a blend of cotton and spandex, which gives it just the right amount of stretch while remaining comfortable on your baby’s skin.
The baby’s air passage must be clear when you place him or her in the baby wear. You should never have to move the fabric to access the mouth and your child’s face should be slightly tilted up, not resting on his or her chest. Nor should baby’s face be tightly squished against your chest. Put the baby’s ear by your chest instead.
You need to be comfortable, as well. Keep you feet squared beneath your shoulders, keep your spine straight, and know that you may feel aches and pains when you first wear your baby or when you use the device for extended periods. Be careful going down steps, moving quickly or suddenly, and in inclement weather.
Unless you are feeding your child, keep him or her in an upright position when using a baby wear device.
Routine checks for wear and tear
As with anything that you use on a regular basis, check regularly for wear and tear. Look for frayed straps and fabrics, small rips, or compromised attachments. Replace at the first sign of any of these problems.
Quality product selection
While money may be an issue after having a baby, do not compromise with poorly made products. Our Wraps have been tested over time to stand up to heavy use without the strength of the material being compromised.
Once you begin using baby wear and your child begins to age, you will want to change the type of baby wear that you use. Some styles are suited to different ages and will require you to change your baby’s position; you need to be aware of these needed changes and when to implement them.
Baby Carriers and Positions by Age
Your child is going to cry less, you are going to create an amazing bond, and feeding your child will be easier as you use a baby holding device. It helps to know which types are recommended for different ages. You will end up purchasing more than one of them.
Newborn to around 6 Months
This is the age at which neck muscles are the weakest, so this is a consideration. The baby should be placed in a sling or wrap made of soft, yet durable material at this age. His or her ear or cheek should rest against your chest. A carrier, even when made of cloth, will not achieve the same snug fit as a sling or wrap will. So save the material carriers for when your child is older. If your baby was a preemie, you may be able to use the wrap or sling for a longer period. On the other hand if you gave birth to a hearty baby, these options may be used for a shorter time. At around 19 pounds, you will want to move to a different device.
6 to 18 Months
At around 6 months or 19 pounds, your baby has achieved neck control and is becoming very aware of sights and sounds. They are also moving around more. You will have some more freedom as to what position you can setup your baby in your Wrap so they can see and interact with their environment more. Outward facing positions and back wearing also becomes a viable option if your baby is comfortable with this.
18 Months to 40 Pounds in Weight
At this age, children are very active. Part of the reasons you might be using baby wear is so you can keep track of them or help them when they are tired. A concern for you becomes your back and spine health and safety. You have to carry a child who may weigh up to forty pounds for extended times. So it is personal preference as to how long you will feel capable of wearing your baby. At this stage you may want to explore the option of a baby carrier so the weight can be distributed across your shoulder and hips to reduce the toll it will take physically.
Now Born do not manufacture a carrier as part of its range. However, you can find out all you need to know about finding the right carrier for you at KatherineRosman.com.
The health, emotional, and mental benefits of using baby wear are endless, but there is much to consider, as you look for the ones you wish to use. Safety, the various baby positions, and the age of your child will all need to be reviewed when selecting the best fit for you and your precious bundle.