Baby carriers are not an alternative to your pushchair. They’re a valuable add on, that can make trips out a lot easier. Could be a wander round a local market or just a pub lunch. Added bonus? Your partner will love carrying your baby this way. Plus, you’ll probably have a very calm baby, soother by your (or daddy’s) heartbeat
Read the instructions
Yes, even if you normally throw them to one side, a good carrier will come with instructions on how to use it correctly and safely.
Make sure your baby is fed, rested and changed before putting her in a carrier for the first time. If she’s upset or wriggling, your heart rate may increase as you both stress each other out.
>> READ: THE DOS AND DON’TS OF BABY CARRIERS AND SLINGS
Ease into it
Baby Carriers all work in different ways and can be quite complicated at first, but practice makes perfect. If it’s your first time, try the baby carrier out on a teddy. You’re in your home – nobody will see!
When you’re ready to start with your baby, stand over a bed or sofa in case you lose your hold or need to put her down.
Support her back
Hold your baby as close to your chest as possible, supporting her back, neck and head with one arm at all times. Have someone with you if possible – this will help you feel more confident.
A baby carrier that holds your baby upright is better for easing colic and reflux – she’ll be more comfortable and her food will settle. Keep her facing you, not outwards, until she’s able to hold up her head up independently.
If the carrier is too loose, your baby will slump, putting pressure on her back and pulling on yours. One that’s too tight will curve her chin to her chest and restrict her breathing. Choose a baby carrier that keeps her at breast level, and make sure she’s close enough for you to kiss her forehead.
Face to face
You should see her face whenever you look down, so you can tell she’s well and happy. Never use excess material, such as a blanket, which will cover her face.
You should see her face whenever you look down, so you can tell she’s well and happy
A baby carrier should be secure enough that you don’t have to support her with your hands as well. If you still have to hold on to her tightly, the carrier isn’t fitted correctly. If you’re unsure, ask for help from your health visitor or babyslingsafe.com can offer advice. If you’re doubtful of how secure your carrier is – don’t use it.
Are you comfortable?
When you’ve got her in the correct position, your baby can spend as long as you like in her baby carrier. The amount of time she’s in there depends on how strong your back is, so listen to your body and take a break when you need to. You having a bad back will help no one!
Don’t forget her
It sounds obvious, but remember your baby’s there – sleep deprivation can make all of us walk round in a daze. Don’t use the carrier in the car, on a bike, while running or doing anything that could put her at risk.