In case you haven’t heard, the start of October is International Babywearing Week. The normally week-long celebration, has been extended by two days this year due to popular demand and will officially run between 1st and 9th October. The theme for 2018’s International Babywearing Week is ‘babywearing has…’ – a celebration of the benefits of babywearing and the many positives it can bring to the lives of you and your little one. This year marks the week’s 10th anniversary and the event intends to “promote babywearing as a universally accepted practice, with benefits for both child and caregiver, through education and support”.
But what exactly is babywearing, and why might you want to consider it as a new parent? Let’s look at some of the benefits.
What is Babywearing?
The practice of babywearing actually dates back centuries. Across the world women have chosen to carry their babies close to their chest as they go about their everyday activities, rather than push them along in a pushchair or buggy.
Nowadays, women tend to use a type of sling or baby carrier to attach their baby to them before they head out. There are a range of different slings and baby carriers, including wraps made from stretchy fabric, soft structured carriers with a pouch for your baby, diagonal slings which sit across your body, or backpacks where your baby is carried on your back in a seated position.
The type of sling or carrier you choose really comes down to personal preference. Our baby carrier buying guide should help you pick the best one for your needs.
The Benefits of Babywearing
Carrying your baby on you has both practical and health-related benefits, including…
A happier baby: Studies have found babies carried in a sling cry less on average than those wheeled around in a pram or buggy. One particular study in the Journal of Paediatrics found baby carrying reduced crying by 43 per cent overall.
A healthier baby: Touch and skin-to-skin contact is so important for the health of a new baby. Carrying your baby has proven to improve their health by helping them be more in tune with your breathing, heartbeat and movements.
A more confident you: Carrying your baby in a sling allows you to keep a close eye on your little one – quite literally! Being a new parent can be daunting, but carrying your new baby close to you lets you pick up on their movements, gestures and signals he or she might be hungry or need to be changed. In fact, the close contact given by babywearing can reduce your risk of postpartum depression, according to studies.
A better bond: As well as increasing your confidence in your parenting ability, babywearing can boost the bond between you and your infant. The close proximity will let mummy, daddy, granny, grandpa and other caregivers get to know your little one very quickly indeed!
An easier life: There’s no denying the practical aspects of babywearing. Having your hands free for any daily tasks can be a revelation to parents trying babywearing for the first time, plus when you’re out and about you don’t have to struggle with a bulky pushchair.
Want to give babywearing a try? We’ve got everything you need to get started on your babywearing journey.
International Babywearing Week 2018
This article is part of PreciousLittleOne’s initiative for International Babywearing Week 2018. From handpicked products to useful advice and handy guides – we are covering all your babywearing needs!