Babywearing is a very practical way for new parents to carry their little ones absolutely everywhere while keeping their hands free. As well as being a great alternative to prams and pushchairs, it keeps babies in close contact with their mothers and fathers!
The benefits include not only convenience but also physical contact, which helps to calm babies, so they cry less and rest more. It is almost as if they are in a second womb, where they are reassured by the heartbeat of the person carrying them. Babywearing helps little ones get into the swing of the family routine more easily. They watch, see things from the same height as adults and get more stimulation.
In addition, babywearing provides greater protection for children and it is a lifesaver for parents because it helps them to get around a lot more easily and walk without hindrances.
Finally, wraps are a lot cheaper than other systems and they can help to promote better bonds with fathers thanks to extended direct contact over time.
There are lots of types of carriers for babywearing. If a little bundle of joy will soon be entering your life, no doubt you’ll be wondering which is the best solution for you!
First of all, it’s important to note that there are structured and unstructured carriers. The former include:
- Mei Tai carriers – They are based on an Asian babywearing method. They are made of a square of fabric with straps on the ends to wrap around the bodies of the parent and the child. They are ideal for children aged 2-3 months and over.
- Hammock slings – They are shorter than traditional slings and they have a pair of rings on one of the two ends. They are recommended for use from 4-5 months to 3 years of age and they are perfect for allowing children to face outwards when they start to get more curious about the world around them.
- Ergonomic baby carriers – They are halfway between a modern baby carrier and a sling. They provide more support, so they are recommended for larger, heavier children, but they are also bulkier.
Traditional wraps fall into the unstructured carriers category. They tend to be more versatile and they allow you to use all of the positions: front (sitting or lying down), hip and back.
- Long stretchy wraps – They are more flexible than their non-stretchy counterparts but they provide less support, so they can only be used from birth until the child reaches a maximum weight of 7-9 kg.
- Long non-stretchy wraps – They adapt as the body of the child develops from birth onwards, so you can use them for as long as he/she wants to be carried.
Now that you’ve chosen the babywearing carrier that best suits your needs, it’s time to pick out some baby clothes for your first trips out and about: here are a few suggestions!