Babywearing is becoming more and more popular in the UAE. The babywearing community is growing weekly and it was only last week when a new mum approached me asking "besides being hands free, what other benefits does babywearing have?". And that is when I had one of my Eureka! moments... I should blog about this. Reasons to wear your baby. It didn’t take me too long to list at least 100 reasons why you should wear your baby, but I have managed to limit them to 10 general accepted reasons why babywearing is good for you.
This one we all know so it might be more appropriate to list what you can do while wearing your baby. Free hands help keep up with chores, work and life. You can do almost anything— write an email, write a report, bake a cake, walk the Marina or go to the beach. You can be superwoman with a baby on your chest or back. Being supermum, you have a superbaby that feels secure, cuddled, nursed, well-rested and engaged with all your super powers.
The safest place for a baby to be is with their Mum or Dad. Unless you are a daredevil. With a baby on your body you know exactly where they are, who they are with, what they have with them, what they are eating, breathing, smelling and tasting. It gives you the ability to be a confident parent because you can feel, hear, see and sense them on our body.
Ever struggled to fold your stroller to fit in the car? Stairs, revolving doors, the sandy beach or parking lot - all things that make pushing that stroller less glamorous. Trying to do everyday things, like groceries, while pushing a stroller is a challenge on it's own. When you wear your baby you can fold the carrier easily, put it wherever you want in the car or handbag even! With baby comfortably strapped to your body, you can run down the stairs, dance through revolving doors and take long strolls on the beach. And you only have to push one thing on wheels while doing grocery shopping.
Babywearing is like a cuddle in a carrier! Having your baby close enough to kiss raises, the love hormone, Oxycontin levels in the body making bonding easy. Watch your baby sleep peacefully, smell them, talk or sing to them, you will fall in love in no time! Grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends love to wear and bond with babies, too! With the babies content, you might even get a chance to bond with your partner!
Breastfeeding your baby in a carrier, wrap or sling is possible, though I advise you to master both skills independently before combining them together. Wearing your baby can also help promote your milk supply as it ignites a blast of Oxycontin through your body, especially if you do skin to skin. For those of us who like to cover up when nursing, your wrap thrown over your shoulder works great as a cover and means you don’t have to carry anything extra around with you.
A baby on your chest or back will have more interaction than a baby in a stroller. The vibration of you chest as you speak, the familiar sound of your voise will make most babies more content when they are being carried. This means they spend more time in the “quiet alert” state – the optimum state for learning. This doesn't mean that babies in strollers don’t develop properly, carrying them just gives them a boost with growth and development. When we wear our babies, we tend to talk to them constantly. We sing, ask them questions, have conversations with ourselves and others, commentate what we are doing and they love to hear it all. When caregivers wear their babies, the babies hear more language and pick up on subtle social cues.
If not talking to your baby, you can have a grown-up conversation about babywearing. I’ve found that babywearing is a great conversation starter. Mothers are curious - be it where you found your carrier, complimenting you on how stylish it looks or sharing tips on how to get your wrap nice and tight. When you walk into a mummy group with your carrier you will always have some kind of talking point.
A good safe and ergonomic baby carrier or wrap will comfortably distribute the weight of your baby evenly across your body, so you can wear your baby much longer than you could ever hold them in your arms. Wearing your baby on walks or while doing chores also helps us mums to get our pre-baby bodies back.
Nothing is more fun than having your little one within easy staring, snuggling, sniffing and kissing distance. If you love dancing you can do it with your baby wrapped on our chest or back. You can hear them giggle as you turn, whirl and twirl.
Finally, the best reason of all is a carried babies cry less! This results in general peace and happiness all around. Babywearing helps a baby suffering reflux and colic feel more comfortable being upright against your torso. Wearing your newborn baby helps to regulate their breathing, temperature and emotional systems. Many babies sleep better and for longer when being carried. Many parents also report that their baby’s night-time sleep improves. Generally, having baby close enough to kiss allows you to cater for all their needs.
So there you have it, my 10 reasons for wearing your baby. If you have other reasons and fancy sharing them, PLEASE DO!
My own experience
Alternative Mama and
Jennifer from NEC Society
Image source: Ergobaby Blog