5 Things You May Not Know About Baby Wearing

father wearing his baby
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When I think of baby wearing, I think of trendy moms on Instagram, showing off beautiful pictures of all the adventures they take with their picture-perfect baby. 

Baby wearing, it would appear, is officially "in". 

But the truth is, baby wearing isn't just a trend — it's actually recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Who knew?

“Baby-wearing” is recommended not just as a response to crying, but to prevent crying and promote parent-infant attachment and the baby’s development," HealthyChildren.org, the educational website of the AAP states

So if the governing pediatric agency is all for baby wearing, maybe we all need to be on board with the "trend," huh? Here are a few tips to consider when you think about wearing your baby:

1. There Are Many Different Styles of Baby Carriers

When I first looked into baby carriers, I was completely and totally overwhelmed. There are so many different brands and companies and styles all claiming to be "the best" that I didn't even know where to start. So I did what many a mother has done before me and turned to my social media to ask other moms what had worked for them. The Boba brand came up quite frequently, so that's what I ended up going with to get me started. 

2. Baby Wraps Can Be Helpful for the Newborn Stage

So one thing you should know: baby wraps and baby carriers are two different things. Baby wraps, like the Moby wrap, are more helpful when your baby is a newborn or very small because it's lightweight and helps just keep the baby all snuggled up next to your body. As your baby grows, however, you may need more support for his/her weight (and your back), which is where baby carriers come in. 

Some carriers also let you hold your newborn in them, however, so if you want to invest in a one-carrier-for-every-stage, look for a baby carrier that has a newborn wearing capability. 

3. You Can't Spoil a Baby Through Baby Wearing

I hold or wear my babies a lot and I have definitely got some comments about how "spoiled" my children are because they like to be held. But guess what? Babies like to be held! And the American Academy of Pediatrics is also on my side with this one. They say that it's just not possible to spoil an infant by holding him or her too much and that in fact, baby wearing can reduce crying, which is less stress for everyone

4. Back Carrying Can Be Awesome

As much as I am a fan of baby wearing, there are times when I just don't want to have a human being strapped to my chest. It's risky, for instance, to cook dinner or chop onions if there is a baby on your chest, but sometimes food needs to be made and the baby will just let me put her down. 

Which is where back carrying can come in really handy. We actually found a great hiking backpack baby carrier at a garage sale and it's been so perfect for carrying larger or older babies around the house when I need to tackle some vacuuming or do anything more physical that I don't want them strapped to my chest for. 

5. Baby Wearing Is Not for Everyone

Some babies and some parents will find that baby-wearing just does not work for them and that's perfectly OK. I had one daughter who hated it and another who loved it. Every baby is different and every parent is different.

Also, if you are the parent of a preemie, you will want to check with your baby's care provider before doing any baby wearing to ensure that you get the right type of carrier for your baby's size and development, as some carriers aren't structured enough for preemie baby's muscles. 

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  • Baby-wearing. (May 2015). HealthyChilden.org, American Academy of Pediatrics. Accessed August 5, 2015: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/preemie/Pages/Baby-Wearing.aspx