Avoid These Common Babywearing Safety Mistakes

by 2 September 11, 2015

The benefits of babywearing abound. It promotes physical and emotional development, strengthens the bond between parent and baby, allows baby a bird’s eye view of the world, allows parents to be hands-free and can allow for on-the-go breastfeeding. Here are some common safety errors when first using a carrier. Too Low, Too Loose Always aim for the baby to be high and tight or “visible and kissable.” You always want to be able to keep a close eye on your baby and be able to monitor his breathing. Remember to reposition baby after you’ve finished nursing him. [caption id="attachment_811" align="alignleft" width="225"]Too low and loose Too low and loose in a Pikkolo[/caption] [caption id="attachment_817" align="alignleft" width="225"]Too Low Too Low and Too Loose in a Ring Sling[/caption]                   Fit Tip: When putting the carrier on, hold your baby in the proper position on your body (on your chest where you naturally hold him), then bring the carrier to your baby and tighten while supporting his weight. If you support the baby’s weight gently in one hand, it will be much easier to adjust your carrier. [caption id="attachment_813" align="alignleft" width="225"]3 mo in Catbird Baby Pikkolo High and comfortably snug in Pikkolo[/caption] [caption id="attachment_816" align="alignleft" width="225"]High and Snug High and comfortably snug in Ring Sling[/caption]                     Carrier That’s Too Big/Unadjusted When using a carrier that’s too big, getting the proper fit can be tough and safety can become an issue. Infants may not get the lateral and spinal support they need, the carrier may be too tall/cover the head, or their knees may be spread too far apart. [caption id="attachment_807" align="alignleft" width="225"]Too big without insert Baby's face is buried[/caption] [caption id="attachment_805" align="alignleft" width="225"]Not sized properly Baby's feet are splayed[/caption]                   When using traditional SSCs with newborns, follow the manufacturer’s instructions, make the proper adjustments and use recommended inserts as indicated. Remember, visible and kissable! [caption id="attachment_808" align="alignleft" width="225"]Proper fit in SSC using infant insert Fitted properly with recommended insert[/caption] [caption id="attachment_806" align="alignleft" width="225"]Proper fit in SSC that is adjustable for infants. Adjusted properly per instructions[/caption]                   The unstructured design of mei teis, ring slings, wraps and buckle carriers like the Catbird Baby Pikkolo are great for newborns. [caption id="attachment_814" align="alignleft" width="225"]3-month-old baby in mei tai Catbird Baby Mei Tei[/caption] [caption id="attachment_812" align="alignleft" width="225"]3-mo in Catbird Baby Pikkolo Catbird Baby Pikkolo[/caption]                   Fit Tip: When babies are little, less is more. Look for carriers that provide snug support without excess fabric or padding. Compromised Airway Babies can sometimes slump into a chest to chin position when in their baby carriers (or car seats or bouncers). The upright, tummy-to-tummy position is the easiest way to maintain an open airway. [caption id="attachment_815" align="alignleft" width="225"]Cradle hold in ring sling Cradle position can pose a risk[/caption] [caption id="attachment_818" align="alignleft" width="225"]Tummy to tummy in ring sling Tummy-to-tummy position for safety[/caption]                   Fit Tip: Make sure that your baby’s chin is off the chest and that there is adequate airflow. Never cover baby’s head with a blanket. Babywearing is a great parenting tool! With the right carrier (or carriers), you and baby will look and feel comfortable. If you’re having trouble getting the right fit, babywearing groups, volunteer and certified babywearing educators are wonderful resources. The post Avoid These 3 Common Babywearing Mistakes first appeared September 2, 2015 on The Leaky Boob as part of their #TLBsafeKids campaign.



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