All humans benefit from the act of touch, especially babies. During your postpartum period through the toddler stages, you may notice how babywearing can drastically improve your postpartum experience.
Here are 11 Ways You and Your Family Can Benefit From Babywearing
1. Mommy can more productive and time efficient.
This is one of the major concerns for new mothers. There seems to be so much to do all the time, and you in your sleep-deprived state are expected to do it. Babies are very dependent and don’t take too kindly to being left to sit or lay alone while you take care of stuff. Some babies only want to be held by mommy to hear her heartbeat and smell her milk. Maybe they want to keep tabs on the milkies! I don’t know! LOL!
Babywearing allows you to complete important tasks and stay close to baby at the same time. This is beneficial because the more you get done while baby is awake, the more time you get to sleep while baby is sleeping.
2. Protection against SIDS.
It’s very difficult and stressful to keep your eye on a baby 24/7, especially when you have things to do. Sometimes the root cause of anxiety during the postpartum period is lacking sleep because you’re so worried about the baby choking, or rolling over, falling, etc.
When babywearing you can keep an eye on your baby the entire time, and do your tasks in peace. You can focus on your tasks with a clear mind, knowing your baby is safe. (Be mindful of your baby’s proximity to smoke, steam, chemicals, walls/doors. Keep your space clutter-free and spacious as possible to prevent falling/tripping. Remove cords from walking spaces.)
3. Enhances baby’s development.
When babywearing, your baby gets to watch you do things from various perspectives. Crawling and walking, babies experience a limited perspective of their environment, but from your line of view, they get to see so much more, and witness you being productive. This helps develop their brains from a very young age, and can sometimes hold their attention longer than sitting alone on the floor. They get to watch you interact with others, and get their first socializing experiences.
Research has shown that babies born prematurely, or with special needs, tend to gain weight faster when they are held more often.
4. Regulates baby’s breathing, heart rate and body temperature.
In the early part of life, babies have a difficult time regulating their body temperature. Being close to you helps their body temperature to normalize. This is why skin-to-skin contact is so important.
When their heart rate is regulated or normalized, this helps their breathing to regulate as well.
5. Babies can bond with the others.
Babywearing is a great opportunity for the baby to bond with the other parent, and with grandparents, uncles, aunts, friends, etc. When babies can build bonds with other adults, this improves their ability to trust, and gives mommy a very much needed break, here and there. Breaks are VITAL to mommy’s mental health.
6. Baby slings can go where strollers cannot.
With all the things we have to carry around with the baby, like bags and equipment, wearing the baby is a relief to most. You can do things like hike, or visit amusement parks without having to struggle with equipment. My favorite thing about baby wearing was being able to shop without pushing a stroller. It is impossible to push a supermarket cart and a baby stroller at once, and a second adult is not always available when you need to make a run to the store!
7. Breastfeed hands free!
Another of my favorite things about babywearing is being able to breastfeed without being confined to a chair or bed. Once you master babywearing, you can often learn how to position your baby perfectly so they can nurse without you having to hold them. If you’re shy about nursing in public, this is a big one! You can nurse your baby discreetly in the sling. Now THAT is convenient, especially in the early states when they are nursing every 2-3 hours.
8. Eases colic.
Having baby close, and baby experiencing the swaying and natural movement that occurs when being worn, can ease colic symptoms. Babies that are worn tend to cry less often. The security they feel can help ease colic symptoms.
9. Take a break.
Listen, mama… I know your arms hurt. Support baby weight with your whole upper body, not just your arms. Babywear!
10. Milk production.
Having baby close to you stimulates your milk production. There may be moments when milk production slows or speeds up, as your body tries to regulate and determine how much milk your baby needs. Wearing the baby close to you will help your body do that better.
11. Helps prevent postpartum depression.
Back to my first point, humans naturally benefit from touch. Having your baby close to you during the postpartum period stimulates hormones in your brain that fight depression. Babywearing is the easiest way to keep baby close to you as much as possible.