How to use a baby wrap, carrier, or sling safely
It would be wonderful to be close to your baby while still being able to use both of your hands. Many parents find that carrying their baby in a carrier, sling or baby wrap helps them do this.
To keep your baby safe and to keep you both happy and comfortable, it’s essential to properly carry them. You can choose the best baby carrier for you and your baby by knowing the rules of safe babywearing.
What is Baby Wearing?
Baby wearing has been around for as long as there were babies. It is practical because the baby can be held and the caregiver can do other tasks.
An adult can use a sling, a piece or carrier to carry a baby. You can wear your child in many ways, from infants to preschoolers. There are wraps (like the Solly Baby or Moby), soft-sided carriers like the Ergo and Baby Bjorn, and slings.
A baby wrap, sling or carrier can be an excellent way to keep your baby close and you are able to use your hands to move around. However, there are some precautions you should take to ensure your baby is safe and comfortable.
Take care of your baby
Your baby should be upright and vertical when you’re wearing them. If a baby is allowed to lie in a cradle, it can cause their chin to be too close to their chest. This could compromise their ability to breathe.
The baby should be upright so that their airway can stay straight and allow them to breathe freely. This position allows your baby to see the world around him.
Make sure their face is visible
You can ensure that your baby is safe by ensuring you are able to see their entire face at all times. Regularly check to ensure that your baby is breathing properly and their head is not in danger.
Put your baby in a tight fitting shirt
The baby should be hugged close by the carrier, wrap or sling they use for comfort and safety. Your baby’s breathing may be affected if they are unable to sit upright due to loose fabric.
They are also more likely to slip out if the carrier doesn’t fit snugly, which can lead to a fall. Unstretched carriers can cause discomfort for adults’ backs.
Keep them close enough to kiss
Your baby should be close enough that they can touch your head when you are wearing them. Your baby should be held high by your carrier, wrap, or sling.
If you wear your baby too low, it increases the chance that they will fall asleep in the carrier. This can lead to their head falling down towards their chest. The bottom line is that a baby who is too low can make it difficult to see their faces and head and ensure they are safe.
Make sure they are supported
Your baby should face in towards your body when they are facing in. Make sure your back is straight. Avoid bending your baby in a C-shape, leaving space between the baby’s chest and belly. This can make it difficult for the baby to breathe.
Keep their hips flexed
The hip joints of a baby’s newborn are still loose. It takes six months for them become more stable. Hip dysplasia is a condition in which newborns are more vulnerable to soft bones and loose ligaments. This occurs when the socket and ball hip joints are misaligned or out of alignment.
You should ensure that your baby is comfortable when you’re carrying him around for long periods of time. Your baby should be supported by the carrier’s back. If the carrier is correctly positioned, your baby will have his legs in an “M” shape, with his knees higher than his bottom.
Additional Things to Consider
When you are ready to carry your baby, make sure you inspect your wrap, sling or carrier. You should inspect for missing or damaged parts, loose stitching, buckles, straps, or broken buckles.
This is particularly important if your baby wear device was passed down to you from an older child or if it’s second-hand. Multiple injuries are reported each year by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).