As any frequent reader of this blog will know…I love a good bit of baby wearing. In fact, I’d quite literally say that its helped keep me sane through my days with two Velcro-babies!
From easing baby reflux, to getting little FOMO babes off to sleep (Zachy), to having my hands free to just do all. the. stuff, baby wearing – to me – has been an absolute god send!
With International Baby Wearing Week falling between October 02 – 08 this year then, I thought I would do a little post highlighting one of my favourite stores for all things carrier related – Luxe Carriers.
Run by the lovely Sarah Lander, Luxe Carriers is a UAE based business, which, through Sarah’s passion for baby wearing, helps to promote and spread awareness of the extreme benefits baby wearing can bring to both babies and parents alike.
I first met Sarah back in May when Millie was only a few weeks old. Enjoying the pleasure of one of her home consultations, she helped show me the different types of carriers currently available, and which were good choices for Millie and I as we started on our baby wearing journey.
Having recently opened a super lovely little pop-up-shop in Dubai Garden Centre with one of my other favourite baby-businesses, Eggs N Soldiers, I caught up with Sarah for a little Q&A around the topic as International Baby Wearing Week approached.
From what age can you start wearing your baby?
You can start wearing your baby from the time they are born. If you have a carrier before your baby arrives, wash it (if it is a wrap or sling) and wear it to get your scent on the fabric. A stretchy wrap like the Boba or Hana wrap will allow you to do skin to skin discreetly and is perfect for ‘Kangaroo Care’.
Why is baby wearing beneficial for baby?
An ergonomic baby carrier will support the development of your baby’s hips and spine. It’s great for babies suffering reflux and colic as it keeps them upright. Being close to a caregiver helps to develop social and emotional security. It also allows babies to express themselves – for example, getting their caregiver’s attention with a squirm, facial expression, and a goo-gaa before they launch into the lung screaming stage.
Can you explain hip dysplasia and what to be conscious of when buying a carrier?
The hip joint is classified as displaced when the ball and socket do not fit together in their ‘normal’ position. Ligaments inside the hip can become stretched and loose. Baby wearing does not cause hip dysplasia but it can help the development of healthy hips.
It is very important to have an ergonomic baby carrier. An ergonomic carrier will support baby’s hips in an optimal hip position when the fabric of the seat goes from knee to knee. This means the baby’s bottom should be in a lower position to their knees so that their legs and hips form an M shape.
Baby carriers found at Luxe Carriers are all ergonomic in that they support the development of the baby’s hips and spine. However, some carriers are more supportive than others. This is dependent on the size, age and shape of the baby. Having a consultation can ensure that you get the best ergonomic carrier for your baby.
So what about me – how will baby wearing help my posture?
Having your baby snuggly positioned on your chest with their head close enough to kiss and their bottom above your belly button will allow you to stand with a positive posture with your head stacked on your shoulders, ribcage, hips, knees, ankles and feet. The weight of the baby is supported by the carrier. If your carrier is not allowing you to do this then you need to make some adjustments or work out if the carrier is truly ergonomic.
So, if my back is aching, am I doing something wrong?
Possibly. You should check that your carrier has a good positioning, with the baby’s bottom sitting above your belly button and head close enough to kiss. Also check that the carrier is tight, making the baby part of your centre of your gravity.
It’s sometimes said that baby wearing causes “bad habits” as baby will be less likely to sleep in their cot and want carrying all the time…does baby wearing cause over-attached babies / toddlers?
Honestly, babies love to be held! So why not do it? Babies feel secure and calm when they are physically attached to their carer. When they are in this state, they go into a zone for optimal learning. Babies are learning about feelings and communication while attached to a person they love.
Funnily enough, you are also teaching baby independence through dependence. By letting them know that you are there, that you’ve got their back so to speak, they will feel more adventurous and curious to learn and explore life. What better gift can you give a child? This is a fantastic overview of ‘Attachment Theory’ by psychologist, John Bowlby.
Finally, when out and about, what is your choice of carrier for the following…
Well, this also depends on the age of the baby and the length of the trip, but generally speaking, these are my top choices for the following environments –
- Supermarket / Mall trips – A Ring Sling or Soft Structured Carrier
- House wearing – Anything goes! Whatever is most comfortable for whatever activity you are doing at home.
- Beach / pool fun – Mesh Ring Sling or Mesh Wrap
- Hiking – Soft Structured Carrier, Woven Wrap or Mei Tai
- Traveling – Soft Structured Carrier
P.s. Check out Sarah’s blog post on baby wearing for International Babywearing Week 2017. If you’re based in the UAE, definitely swing by the Luxe Carriers – Eggs N Soldiers pop-up store in Dubai Garden Centre, which is present until at least year-end.
Millie-moo enjoying her gorgeous Little Frog Ring Sling