Why wear your baby? Simple: it is beneficial for both the baby and the parent.
1. Convenience. When we wear a baby, our hands are free to do other things like carry groceries, cook a meal, fold laundry, etc. It is far easier to run errands, take a walk to the park, and to navigate a crowded shopping area, farmer’s market or busy airport without the bulk of a stroller or carrying car seat. Many carriers also double as blankets, changing pads, nursing covers, etc. and lighten the load of baby essentials you might normally bring on an outing.
2. It promotes breastfeeding. Having your baby so close to your skin and their source of food promotes frequent and comfortable breastfeeding. In many instances, you will be able to walk around while feeding your baby in the carrier and no one will even notice that your wee one is having a snack.
3. It promotes physical development. Babies worn in a carrier close to the body are in tune with the parent’s heart rate, breathe, smell and movements. This in turn helps to regulate a baby’s own physical responses and activates his sense of balance. This closeness mimics the environment your baby knew in the womb. This calms her and allows her to put energy into growing and learning instead of fussing for a caregiver. It also allows the parent to be secure in the knowledge that their little one is eating, sleeping, and breathing well. There is also evidence that contact like this helps premature babies put on weight and gain improvements in health. These results do not happen from swing or bouncer time.
4. It develops secure emotional attachment and sponsors emotional development. Research shows that babies that are held and carried are happier. They cry and fuss far less than babies who are not held and carried. A held baby who can hear his caretaker’s heartbeat and look into their face is secure in the knowledge that they are warm and safe. They are not flooded with the constant stress hormones accompanied by frequent crying and often are lulled effortlessly to sleep by the rhythmic motions they experience as they ride through the everyday activities of their parents.
5. It supports cognitive development. Babies who are held or worn are right up where the action is. They see all the people and places they pass as you go through their day. They are able to observe a parent cooking, folding laundry, using a library card, making change and the dozens of other interactions they have throughout the day. Babies who are held are participants in life and thus are spoken to directly by parents and by others on a much more regular basis than babies pushed in front of caregivers in strollers are. Babies are little observers in a quiet and alert state that encourages learning and brain stimulation.
6. It is a great way for dads, grandparents and other caregivers to bond with baby. When held or carried, babies are able to get to know the other important people in their lives in a much more intimate way than if the just sat on their knee. They are also becoming accustomed to the heartbeats, voices, rhythms and gestures of their fathers, grandparents, and other caregivers.
7. It is a great way to get back in shape postpartum. You have to carry your baby anyway. Wearing them distributes their weight more easily, encourages you to be a little more active, and provides you with a colorful accessory (the carrier) to jazz up your workout gear. You can even find workouts that are meant to be done while wearing your baby if you search online.
8. It can be a great tool to help a new mom combat the baby blues. Having a little person attached to your body is a great way to sneak in mood boosting snuggles and kisses and can help moms bond with their infants without feeling burdened by all of their needs.
9. It is easier than taking a stroller up the stairs or onto a bus. Enough said!
10. It is fun! You will have a more active and engaging life with your new baby, will have arms to spare for your other children and will meet a whole slew of new friends who baby wear too!
If you want a carrier like the one pictured above try the Moby GO baby carrier. Enjoy!
Monday, June 17th, 2013