The Many Benefits of Babywearing:
- Helps Babies Grow and Thrive
- Reduces Infant Mortality, SIDS
- Soothes Crying and Colic
- Encourages Mental Development
- Reduces Incidences of Post-Partum Depression
- Better Bonding = Easier Discipline
Helps Babies Grow and Thrive
Most mammals are born with four legs and literally "hit the floor running." Their gestational period ends with their first breath. Human babies are born less developed and naturally have higher needs at birth. Your baby's gestational period doesn't end at birth, but rather continues for many months. Because of this, nurturing the child to adapt to life outside the womb becomes essential in order to properly regulate your baby's systems.
Carriers will extend the womb experience and provide a home base of sorts for your newborn. While in the womb, your baby's systems were organised on autoplay. The baby experiences the parent's rhythmic walk, heart beat and breathing while they are worn, and these act as a pacemaker of sorts which remind the baby to organise and pattern her own functions with yours. Babywearing in a sling provides comfort and regulation and adds to the security and warmth so that your infant can focus her energies on positive growth.
Reduces Infant Mortality, SIDS
This is especially true for the premature babies, as mortality rates decrease by as much as 70% when premature newborns are worn in a carrier. The enormous benefits a carrier provides to a premature baby were first discovered accidentally by a care specialist in South Africa. Unable to offer technological incubators, they used the moms and secured their babies to them with a sling-like wrap creating an "exterior womb." To everyone's amazement; the premature infants that were worn throughout most of the day thrived and grew just as well, and sometimes even better, as the incubated infants.
Soothes Crying and Colic
Research shows that babies worn for at least 3 hours a day cry 43% less during the day and 51% less at night. Babywearing is an ideal preventative measure for more peaceful days and nights.
Encourages Mental Development
Since worn babies spend less time crying and trying to soothe themselves, they are freed (in their state of quiet alertness) to observe more and to positively interact more. Carried babies are more intimately involved in their parent's world and are more engaged in what is going on around them. They socialise better since they are carried at eye level instead of sitting at knee level, like in a stroller. The brain is stimulated by the inclusion provided by babywearing and therefore is encouraged to grow and develop. Scientific evidence shows that carried babies demonstrate advanced speech development and enhanced visual and auditory alertness.
Reduces Incidence of Post-Partum Depression
Studies shows that Post-Partum Depression is much less common among mothers who frequently wear their infants. The reason is not entirely known but many speculate that it may be because of a hormonal stimulation baby-wearing provides and because worn babies cry much less.
Better Bonding = Easier Discipline
The deeper the connection between a parent and child, the easier discipline will be in the future. Wearing your infant in a carrier is a bonding investment that enhances the connection between you and your baby. Credible research comparing well-connected children with poorly-connected children brings to light that connected children are more secure, settled, trusting, sociable, positive, adaptable, confident, considerate, co-operative, willing to share, empathetic, sensitive, affectionate, persistent, and eager to learn.
Other Key Benefits
Carrying your baby in a sling allows for your hands to be free in order to go about daily tasks. Baby carriers are extremely helpful during times when using a stroller would be inconvenient - such as up stairs, through large crowds, narrow aisleways, or over rough terrain. It is also helpful when frequently transferring to and from the car. It is much easier to slip on a sling than to drag out and unfold the stroller. Baby carriers put your baby at the height of people's faces instead of at their knees therefore encouraging social interactions and development.