Top Benefits of Babywearing
Author: Charmaine Morgan
For expectant parents, nothing can compare to the joy of seeing and holding their newborn for the first time. But for mothers still recovering from the physical pain of childbirth, the time after giving birth can be extremely tiring.
With sleepless nights, feeding time, nappy changes and a million other things to be done for the baby you find yourself so busy that you can’t even finish a cup of tea.
Good thing, though, the tradition of babywearing is enjoying a resurgence of interest around the world. This practice of wearing or carrying one’s baby close to the body using a special sling or baby carrier has been around for ages. People in rural Asia, Africa, South America and other parts of the world continue to carry their babies and even toddlers using sturdy yet soft clothing wrapped around both mother and child, the way their ancestors did.
With babywearing, you and your baby can benefit in the following ways:
1. Wearing your baby keeps your baby safe and secure
Your baby spent about nine months in your womb, so the discomfort of being “exposed” or overstimulated in a new environment contributes to their crying episodes.
Keeping your baby close to you soothes and comforts them as it feels like an “extension” of the warm womb they were accustomed to during your pregnancy.
Even toddlers can benefit from babywearing, especially when you’re in places where there are a lot of unfamiliar sights, sounds and faces, such as in malls, zoos and parks.
2. Babywearing wraps free up your hands to do other things
One of the foremost practical benefits of babywearing is that it allows you to get other stuff done while still holding your baby.
All the stuff we need to get done in a day doesn’t stop just because you have a baby. Babywearing is the perfect solution for parents who need to multi-task.
3. Babywearing helps enhance the bond between you and your baby
A sling or baby carrier is a useful tool that allows you to not only physically keep your baby close but also to forge a strong attachment between you and your child. Remember, you and your partner’s or spouse’s voice are the first voices your baby will hear.
Continuing this emotional bonding reinforces your baby’s attachment to you and keeps them happy, secure and content knowing their needs are being met by those who love them.
4. Promotes your baby’s physical development
Studies have shown that babies with low birthweight benefit greatly from skin-to-skin (STS) contact, including babywearing. Keeping a baby close to the caregiver’s body has been shown to improve the baby’s sleep quality, enhanced alertness while awake, and mental and psychomotor development at 12 months.
It has also been observed that hip dysplasia (dislocation) in babies is quite uncommon in societies where babywearing is practised.
5. Alleviate postpartum depression
Research has established a link between more skin-to-skin contact between mother and child with decreasing the rate of postpartum depression.
Also, with the convenience babywearing offers, you can stay active, go out for a walk and enjoy the company of friends. This way, there’s no need for you to feel isolated and unsupported as you’ll be getting the necessary social and emotional support you need to take care of your baby confidently.
6. Baby wraps help prevent flathead syndrome
Overusing car seats, cribs and the like has led to babies suffering from positional plagiocephaly, or “flat head syndrome.”
If parents or caregivers do not intentionally turn the baby or shift its position while sleeping, the baby’s developing skull can end up flat around the backside.
Babywearing eliminates this problem as there won’t be any pressure on the back of your baby’s head, so it helps ensure your baby develop a healthy and naturally shaped head.
7. Good for your physical fitness and health
As a new mum, you may be keen to get back into your pre-pregnancy exercise routine. Wrap on a Baby K’tan active carrier and get sweating. These baby carriers are made from a special sport mesh, which allows for temperature control and wicking away sweat. Babywearing adds just a bit of weight to get your body to exert more energy and burn more calories.
It’s like having free weights attached to your body. So, whether your daily exercise, for now, is limited to walking, you are unknowingly expending more energy and getting more fit.
8. Babywearing wraps are cost-effective
Slings cost a lot less compared to backpacks, strollers and front carriers. They are useful, economical, easy to use, and clean.
This equipment is something you can use every day, for as long as you can comfortably carry your baby (or toddler) around. There’s no need to have multiple pieces of baby equipment that you need to lug around, maintain and store.
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