How to Wear Your Baby Sling Safely

The art of babywearing has become one of the biggest trends recently. Not only it’s fashionable for a parent or carer, but it also helps to be able to still carry the baby while using both hands on other tasks or activities.

There are several kinds of baby carriers around. The most popular nowadays is the baby sling carrier.  A sling is a cloth that is worn by a carer to carry or support an infant or a small child. It lets you carry the baby against your body either front or back. Using a baby sling not only gives you extra mobility but also encourages the bond between the parent and the baby. This makes the baby feel the warmth of your body and hear your heartbeat.  This can give the baby a sense of security and attachment which can lead to a person with confidence and independence later in life.

While there’s no doubt that using a baby sling has a lot of positive effects for both the parent and the baby, it is also important to note that if not worn properly, it can be dangerous too. Extra care is needed when using the baby sling as it may lead to unwanted scenarios like suffocation. It is truly saddening that there were already some recorded deaths of babies in sling.

To avoid any unwanted tragedies and incidents, here are some tips from the website Madeformums.com on how to wear your baby sling safely:

  1. Keep your baby close and safe, and frequently check the baby’s position.
  2. The sling should keep your baby high and tight against your chest, not around your waist or hips. It should fit your body.
  3. Your baby should be close enough to kiss, with his head as close to your chin as comfortably possible.
  4. In an upright sling, your baby should be held comfortably close to you so the back is supported in its natural position and the tummy and chest are against you.
  5. If a sling is too loose, he could slump down, which could partially close the airway. This can be tested by placing a hand on your baby’s back and pressing gently; he shouldn’t uncurl or move closer to you.

Things to avoid:

  1. Avoid a covered face. The baby’s face should always be visible. The fabric of the sling should not be covering the baby’s face. The baby should face upwards and not turned in towards your body.
  2. Avoid a hunched, chin-to-chest position. The baby’s head and body should be properly supported. The chin should not lean onto the baby’s chest as this might cause some breathing restrictions. There should be at least a width distance between the chest and the chin.
  3. Avoid bag-style slings. This type of slings usually has the deep pouch design. This can give the baby the c-position where the chin touches the chest. This position can restrict airflow.

Majority of the baby slings available in the market today are generally safe. Just make sure that the instructions that come with the sling are strictly followed as well as the tips provided in this article. Avoid the things that should be avoided, and don’t use the sling when you are dizzy or not feeling well. Do not use the sling until you are more stable and ready.

There are also a lot of tutorials you can find online that could show you how to properly wear a baby sling depending on the type. You can go to the official website of the baby sling manufacturer to see instructions directly from them. Also, there are also several videos on YouTube from both manufacturers and mothers as well that could show you exactly how it’s worn.

Advisable slings are the following:

  • Shallow-pouch sling
  • Upright baby carriers
  • Ring slings
  • Wrap slings

Happy babywearing!

References:

http://www.madeformums.com/reviews-and-shopping/shopping-guides/baby-slings–how-to-wear-one-safely/38488.html

http://www.sheffieldslingsurgery.co.uk/positive-effects/effects-on-baby/

http://www.kidspot.com.au/baby/baby-play-and-gear/buying-guides/all-about-slings-the-pros-and-cons-of-baby-wearing

Taking Care of Yourself Whilst Pregnant

Having a baby is considered by many women as the most fulfilling part of womanhood. This is one of the ultimate goals or dreams of majority of women around the world. As such, once a woman gets pregnant, it is important that the mother-to-be becomes extra careful in taking care of her body. It is a fact that the mother’s health becomes the baby’s well-being too.

Aside from the typical personal hygiene, pregnant women need extra care both physically and emotionally. Here are some tips on how to achieve a healthy pregnancy:

  1. Eat healthy.

This is a no-brainer. Even for nonpregnant people, this is among the top ways to be healthy. Whatever we intake will definitely affect us physically which means both internal and external parts of our body. The food you eat will be the baby’s source of nutrition as well. So if you take in junk foods, it means the baby is eating unhealthy foods too.

We have all heard about the unusual cravings of pregnant women during pregnancy. Though it could be emotionally helpful for pregnant women to indulge in their favorite foods from time to time, it is also necessary to look at how healthy or unhealthy the food is. The key is moderation. Don’t eat too much of salty foods or too much of sweets. This is to help maintain your blood pressure level and your sugar level.

Sometimes, some pregnant women could also be advised by their doctors on what to eat and what not to eat especially if they have cases of high blood pressure or high sugar level.

Similar to food, pregnant or not, our body needs hydration. The best way to hydrate is to drink plenty of water. The importance of drinking water increases during pregnancy. Not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration which can cause headaches, dizziness and nausea, cramps, or oedema.  During the third trimester of pregnancy, dehydration can cause contractions that can lead to premature labor. Water can also help prevent urinary tract infection which is very common during pregnancy. Drinking plenty of water can also help to ease constipation which is also common among pregnant women.

  1. Get plenty of rest.

Get enough sleep. It is important that your body is able to rest well during pregnancy. When we sleep, our body is doing some repairs of tissues and muscles. During pregnancy, your body is experiencing so many changes so it is important to get plenty of rest when you can. There might be extra trips to the bathroom at night due to your plenty water intake which definitely could really give you a hard time. Thus, it is better if you can sleep early at night. As your tummy grows bigger when you are on your third trimester, sleeping could really become uncomfortable. Since the baby becomes bigger and heavier, it could feel impossible to lie down comfortably. It could be best to sleep on your side or maybe use some extra pillows on your head and back as a recliner.

  1. Take extra care of your teeth.

In some women, pregnancy can cause dental problems like gum problems or tooth decay. This is because the increased hormones triggered by the pregnancy can cause inflammation of the blood vessels in the gum tissues. Thus, swelling of the gums can be experienced during pregnancy. Dental diseases can affect a developing baby and might cause premature birth so proper and extra care of your teeth is one of the important things during a woman’s pregnancy.

Some tips to take extra care for your teeth are the following:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice daily with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss between your teeth.
  • Visit your dentist

Exercise during pregnancy can help prepare your body for the inevitable strain of labor and delivery. It can prevent excessive weight gain and can also help you sleep better. Just make sure you are not overdoing things when exercising. If you have any health condition or complications, better consult your doctor first to know what kind of exercise you can do or not do.

References:

https://www.midwiferytoday.com/articles/10ways.asp

http://www.prevention.com/health/what-happens-during-sleep

http://www.babycenter.com/0_how-pregnancy-affects-your-sleep_7512.bc

http://www.deardoctor.com/articles/pregnancy-and-oral-health/page3.php

https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/pregnancy-and-teeth

https://www.birkbeckdentistry.co.uk/

Choosing The Right Baby Sling

Choosing the right baby sling for your little one can be a challenging decision and cause you to lose the plot at times. After countless hours of searching and the occasional dummy spit, you still can’t find the baby sling that is right for you. Using a papoose can offer a very convenient method of transportation in comparison to a pram, as it allows you to have your hands completely free while still having your young one close to you. Doing tasks around the house and preparing meals can be easily done while your baby rests comfortably against your body undisturbed.

How To Choose The Right Baby Sling

There are many elements that go into making a good baby sling and it needs to cover all the bits ‘n bobs in terms of safety, comfort, flexibility, durability, size, material, and style. Most importantly, it needs to cater to the fact that your baby is very young and it still has a very soft body structure and a rounded spine. Here are some brilliant points that you should consider when you are choosing a baby sling.

Safety

This should be your number one priority when choosing a baby sling. It needs to have a tight fit so that your baby is supported in addition to being able to keep your little ones face in your view at all times. They should be distanced from you at a length where you are still able to kiss their head and the back should be supported to avoid slumping or restriction of airways.

Comfort

As time passes and you’re using a baby sling, your baby is also going to get heavier. It’s important to cater for this and choose a sling that can handle an increase in weight over time. Try to find a baby sling which has wide, well-padded straps on it and also a waistband while still allowing you get the eating irons out when it’s feeding time.

How long do you want to use a sling for?

Do you want to get a few months usage out of your new sling or use it for longer than a year? A Mei Tai is the perfect type of baby sling for you if you’re looking for a long-term solution.

Practicality

It can be quite complicated to use various slings with all the snaps, zippers, straps, pouches, and buckles and they can also involve a bit of a learning curve too. You need to test how a sling functions before you decide to buy one and practice operating every aspect of it, especially if your grizzle decides to throw a paddy that could potentially move them out of place and become unsettled.

Is your baby heavy?

Heavier babies will require a more durable sling that can accommodate for heavier-set babies. Some types of baby slings can sag with extended use and make it harder to carry a little one.

Now that we have the idiosyncrasies covered, let’s take a look at the different types of baby slings you can choose from. There are four categories of baby slings in the UK.

Wraps

These are the most traditional and the simplest of slings available. You can use them to carry an infant, toddler, or child in a range of positions from the front to the hip, and the back. Wraps can start to sag over time and can make a heavier baby harder to carry so keep this in mind if your little nipper is on the plumper side.

Mei Tai’s

Pronounced “May Tie”, this is an Asian style baby carrier than contains a panel of fabric with two short straps around the waist and two longer straps which go over the shoulders. They can also be worn on the front, back, and hip and are ideal for older babies and toddlers.

Ring Slings and Pouches

These styles of baby slings are made with a piece of fabric that is threaded through rings to adjust to the wearer’s body. A ring sling is adjustable while a pouch will be fixed. It is recommended that you don’t use this style for heavier babies as all their weight will be applying pressure on one shoulder while you are carrying them.

Soft Structured Carriers (SSCs)

A soft structured carrier can offer a mix of convenience, comfort, and accessibility and they often feature a thick waistband and shoulder straps. They are also very similar to a backpack but still maintain a close proximity between you and your baby. You may need to get a special insert for infants who are below a certain size and weight.