5 Things I Know About Wearing Your Baby Safely
Babywearing, it is becoming more and more visible and popular among new parents. Maybe you have seen someone walking down the street with their baby in a totally rad carrier and yet you wonder how did they do that, or is that safe for my baby, or I really want to try that! There are many many things to learn about babywearing, believe me, I have been wearing for 9 years and I STILL have to keep up sometimes! But some things about babywearing never change. Like babywearing safety, and after 9 years I have learned a thing or two about wearing your new baby safely.
5. Don’t Drop the Baby- Your carry should be snug enough to be comfortable for both you and your baby, but tight enough to support your baby’s position. If there is any slack or loose fabric it can cause your baby to slump in the carrier and put uncomfortable pressure on your back. You should also always remember to keep a hand on your baby until your baby is securely in your carrier. Also remember to practice new carriers with a spotter, over a soft surface like a bed or take a knee to reduce your fall hazard.
4. Say No to Cover Ups- You should always be able to check on your baby by glancing down quickly to see their face. There should not be fabric from the carrier or a cover over the baby so you have to move it to check on them.
3. Kiss Your Baby- You should have your baby positioned so that their head is within easy reach of you dropping your chin down to kiss the top of their head or their forehead.
2. Don’t curl up- You should have your baby positioned in the carrier in such a way that it keeps their chin off their chest, protecting the airway. This should provide a “j” shape to your baby rounded at the bottom with a straight back. Your baby should not be able to curl up and drop their chin to their chest.
1. Support their back- Your baby should be positioned in an upright position in the carrier, held comfortably close to you so that their back is supported in its natural alignment and their tummy and chest are resting against you. There should be a slight rounded “c” shape to their spine, not an “s” shape. This ensures your baby is comfortable and also allows you to check on your baby easier. If the carrier is too loose it can cause your baby to slump which may compromise their airway, or if the carrier is too tight it can put uncomfortable pressure on your baby’s spine.
Rosina Fortier is a Birth and Posptartum Doula and Babywearing Educator and owner of Earthsong Doula Services (www.lethbridgedoulas.com) in Lethbridge Alberta Canada. She is mom to 2 boys and a girl, loves babywearing, reading, baking, and a good cup of tea.