A baby carrier makes life a lot easier. Babywearing, as it was coined by child development experts, Dr. William and Martha Sears, has proven benefits for both the baby and the baby wearer alike. There are several forms of baby carriers on the market, each with their own special advantages depending on your lifestyle, size and taste. Regardless of the style you choose, remember these universal safety rules regarding baby carriers;
Practice. It may seem silly, but consider practicing with a stuffed teddy bear or doll when first trying out a new carrier. Look in a mirror and move around to check for any particular safety concerns. This trial run allows you to figure out the straps and wraps, buckles and rings before placing your precious cargo inside.
Protect. Although a baby carrier is meant to free up your arms, follow your instincts and support the baby when stooping down or going through doorways or around corners. Avoid reaching for objects above your head or leaning over while using a baby carrier.
Specifically, baby carriers consist of front carriers, slings, wraps, pouch and frame models. Follow all the manufacturers’ instructions. Choose the baby carrier that suits your height and body shape. There will be one that feels right on you.
Read on to learn the difference and the unique safety concerns of each.
1. Front Carriers, like the popular Baby Bjorn are an excellent choice. Because of its quality design, a front carrier can truly be a hands free once you are accustomed to it. Safety concerns include possible strain on your back as the baby grows, larger babies may have sore legs after being in this style of baby carrier. Check for recalls, especially if you happen to have an older version. Contact the manufacturer for a free repair kit to correct any problems before using.2 Sling-style baby carrierscradle your baby across your body and have the added benefit of being able to nurse discreetly. There is a distinct learning curve with the sling though. Since it is basically a long piece of fabric that wraps around your body, sometimes using rings or ties to hold in place, learning how to properly use a sling takes practice. Check on the baby frequently while in the sling. Watch for over-heating and blocked airways.
3. Wraps are made with much the same thought as a sling-style baby carrier although they have more options in the way they are worn. Infant twins can be securely placed in a Moby Wrap. These designs are extremely back friendly due to the weight distribution and adjustability of the design.4. A pouchis also similar to the sling and the wrap with one important difference, it can not be adjusted. Instead, you purchase a pouch that is precisely the right size for you and it is always ready to when you are without having to adjust or tie any straps.
5. Baby Backpacks, or frame baby carriers are designed for prolonged baby-carrying outings. Be aware of sun exposure if you are out on a long hike or even roaming about town. Another issue with the baby backpack is that it generally requires two people to manage safely putting the baby in and out, as well as a second set of eyes to watch the child.
Ask Dr. Sears-Benefits of Baby Wearing-http://www.askdrsears.com/html/5/t051100.asp#T051103
The Baby Gizmo Buying Guide by Heather Maclean; Thomas Nelson, 2008