One of our favorite newborn care tips is: Babywearing! Learning how to wear your newborn baby can be a lifesaver for new parents. Imagine eating, hands free, while your baby peacefully naps without waking. It can happen and one of the easiest ways is to “wear” your baby in a comfortable and perhaps even stylish baby carrier.
Okay, first some guidelines. (TICKS is a great acronym to remember to help with all of the recommendations.)
- Your baby should be healthy and exceed the minimum weight requirements listed by the carrier manufacturer.
- You should always be able to see your baby’s airway.
- Your carrier should be tight and snug, without gapping more than an inch away from your body but without cutting off baby’s circulation.
- Baby’s head should be as close to your chin as possible.
What kind of carrier should I buy?
A well-made, comfortable, easy to use and weather-appropriate carrier will serve you for many years! There are SO many options on the market now that it can be overwhelming when shopping.
Every parent body and baby body combination presents a bit of a challenge in finding your perfect fit. What works great for your cousin or friend may be TOTALLY unsuitable for you and your baby. When possible, we recommend borrowing your friend’s (and her baby, if you’re still pregnant!). Have her teach you how she uses it.
If available, seek out a babywearing group in your area. Tampa Bay Babywearing is a great resource for Tampa Bay locals, with meet ups around the region, friendly helpers and a lending-library of carriers to rent and try.
If you already have one or two carriers, get your postpartum doula to teach you how to safely and comfortably use it with your baby.
What can I do when wearing my baby?
The shorter answer is what can’t you do! Of course, you’ll practice common sense when babywearing in any scenario, but otherwise the sky’s the limit. In general, it’s not recommended to:
- Ride a bike, scooter, skateboard or roller skates.
- Be in a moving vehicle of any kind.
- Wear your baby anywhere you wouldn’t be carrying your baby in your arms.