- The journal Paediatrics published a study whereby researchers found crying was reduced by 43% with babywearing for 3 hours per day. It also found that if the carrying occurred during the evening, crying reduced by 54%. Less crying for baby means more energy for baby to observe and learn about the environment around them. It means they can have time for more positive interactions and their parents and are less exhausted.
- Babies who suffer from colic or reflux are often more settled when being worn due to the upright position. Health practitioners often advise for baby to be upright after eating and baby carrying can facilitate this.
- Children that are carried have a tendency to sleep for longer periods of time when being carried. The carrier also allows for a simple swaying/rocking movement to allow bub to move into another sleep cycle. It also allows for sleeping or settling while the parent looks after life admin. There is also some research that indicates that night sleep improves with babywearing in the day. It is thought that circadian rhythms may be regulated allowing for baby to distinguish day from night sleep patterns.
- Once you and baby are used to baby carrying you will be amazed by how much you can do. It is a common story that parents feel they can’t attend a party or Saturday evening out because of bub being unsettled. Babywearing allows for the baby to feel calm and comfortable and for parents to have some adult time. It also will allow baby to become involved in their parent’s world. They can participate in special events and get to know other family or friends.
- Babies gain more independence from babywearing (contrary to popular belief!). Studies have shown that children that have their needs met during infancy (we are naturally clingers) are more confident individuals as they learn that the parents are available when needed but have the confidence to try new things on their own.
- Parents often feel overwhelmed by caring for baby and running a household. This can often be driven by bub not wanting to be put down. A baby carrier allows one to continue with daily chores or even work while carrying bub. It allows for easy use of stairs, shopping aisle navigation and movement through crowds. Baby carrying allows increases the parent’s confidence in interacting with the child. There is an increased ability to read bub’s cues and an increased responsiveness.
- 10-15% of new mothers are affected by postnatal depression. Many of whom are left undiagnosed. The Royal College of Midwives reported in 2014 that 60% of mothers felt depressed after birth. Babywearing allows for close contact between mum and bub and may lead to the release of oxytocin, thought to reduce anxiety and depression. Only 4 studies have been done of the effectiveness of oxytocin on PND and all 4 have noted a positive change. Baby carrying can also allow for movement and the ability to get out of the house. This can also be beneficial for those with PND.
- Babywearing gives parents the ability to spend time with all their children. Often a new baby can challenge the relationship with other children. Baby carrying allows for hands to be free to play and interact with other children while keeping bub comforted. It also allows for reconnecting with bub once parent returns to work. Coming home and being able to prepare dinner, make lunch for other children or help with homework while wearing baby allows for another opportunity to reconnect with your child while balancing time with other kids.
- Carrying on the hip, nursing and feeding can create bad postural habits and back pain. A good baby carrier can help distribute weight of baby evenly across the body and reduce the strain. The carriers can also be beneficial for bub’s hip alignment when used properly. I recommend the Manduca or Ergo if looking for a structured carrier, the hug a bub for newborns and ring slings for toddlers.
For more information or for a baby carrying assessment, contact Amy Melamet- Chiropractor in Petersham or Edgecliff