T.I.C.K.S is an acronym used for safe babywearing guidelines. These "rules" were initially put together by The Consortium of UK Sling Manufacturers and Retailers. T.I.C.K.S is extremely important when carrying your newborn baby. Newborn babies have little to no ability to control their head and neck. For this reason the danger of airways being blocked is at high risk. It is, however, always essential to maintain these rules whatever age of the child. The risk to the airway is not just for slings or carriers - it also applies to car seats, baby chairs and even in arms carrying.
So, with that in mind let's have a look at the T.I.C.K.S guidelines:
The importance of a sling or carrier being tight is to hold a baby safely against the wearer, it supports the spine in a supported-upright position and stops baby from falling out of the wrap or carrier accidentally.
In view at all times, Seeing your baby at all times allows you to be constantly monitoring your child’s breathing and general demeanour, you will have the ability to make sure the chin hasn’t dropped and they are happy. You will also be able to check temperature and feeding cues.
Close enough to kiss, This is greatly important also, as the lower the child the less you will be able to tell about your child, placed in an upright position you should be able to lower your head and kiss the top of babies head, if you are unable to do this, then it’s advised your re-position your child higher.
Keep chin off chest, if your child is tight, in an upright position and spine is curved with legs in the squat position the likelihood of the chin dropping is unlikely, this is the most optimum position for safety, development and comfort. The rule of thumb is a child should have a gap of roughly 2 fingers width underneath their chin.
Supported back, the tightness of any carrier will be crucial in the support of a babies spine, it’s also important not to over tighten. The carrier should be tight enough to keep the child against the parents body without a gap, but still have the ability to slide your hands into the carrier with ease if needed. Generally in an upright position, if the carrier is adequately supporting the spine the chin will not drop, but its important to follow all the steps carefully.
When wearing your child, there are more safety checks and tips. However, T.I.C.K.S guidelines are the most basic and most important. If you are uncertain about your carrier or how to apply these guidelines, follow Luxe Carriers on Facebook for up-to-date Carry Me workshops. During these workshops we not only sip on yummy coffee and munch tasty treats. We will demonstrate how to wear your baby safely in a variety of different carriers. If you can't make it to our workshops, feel free to get in touch with Luxe Carriers through any of our social platforms.
If you would like to download a printable PDF format of the T.I.C.K.S guidelines, click HERE.
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