It seems like everywhere you look you see moms wearing their babies. In wraps, in fancy slings, in carriers – baby wearing is good for a baby. But, is it natural for the mom? And how can you protect your spine from injury while doing what you feel is best for your baby? Here are some tips on how to keep both your spine and your baby the healthiest it can be!
What is Baby Wearing?
If you’re unfamiliar with it, baby wearing is the practice of wearing or carrying a child in a sling, or another type of carrier on your body. It keeps the baby close to the mother and has been practiced in many cultures for many centuries.
Benefits for Baby
Baby wearing has been found to not only promote parent-child bonding, but it also increases a baby’s immune system, has positive neurological and emotional effects on development for baby and best of all, gives parent’s both their hands for use! If you’ve got more than one child, you can see the benefits of that last point!
Whether you use a wrap, carrier or sling, it can cause repetitive posture issues for both mother and child. This is why it’s very important to have different carriers for the different stages of development. You have to consider weight of the child, their development and the comfort for both of you. It’s also really important that you align the baby with your center of gravity. Carrying off to one side can cause problems for you later in life!
Having a baby puts your body through a lot, and one of the changes that take place is your body’s production of relaxin. This hormone allows your muscles, ligaments and tendons to stretch and this hormone can stay in your body for up to nine months after you deliver. So, if you have postural adaptations from baby wearing this can have a negative impact on your spine and joints. You can combat this through regular chiropractic checkups after you have the baby in order to make sure your spine remains healthy.
Best Positions for Baby
You need to make sure that no matter what carrier you use that your baby’s knees are higher than his butt. It’s healthy for your baby’s hips to be carried upright with their legs straddled and in a squatted posture, spread at about a 90 degree angle. Plus, when you walk and move it stimulates your baby and promotes a healthy blood supply to their hips.
If you have any questions about wearing your baby, talk to your chiropractor today!
This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.