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Babywearing: Advantages, Positions, and Choice of Carrier

By Lisa Hayden / September 3, 2020
Best Baby Sling Buying Guide

Babywearing: Advantages, Positions, and Choice of Carrier

Baby slings are type of child carrying device that are usually made of fabric and wrap around the torso of the wearer. The act of using a baby sling is called babywearing. There are many different kinds of baby carriers, mostly involving keeping the baby close to the chest. Baby slings can be worn by men and women, but some offer breastfeeding functions that serve their purposes specifically for mothers.


Comfort for the Baby: A sling will not put pressure upon the baby’s back, allowing the child to lie comfortably and naturally. Slings will not impact the developing baby’s spine due to its conforming nature.

Discreet Nursing: A mother can breastfeed her child behind the fabric of a sling, avoiding public exposure.

Calmer Babies: Babies being carried in a sling will have a more calm attitude and behavior. The sling will also reduce crying and fussiness, which will be helpful for babies with colic.

Weight Distribution: Slings distribution weight evenly along the wearer’s back, reducing strain. Unlike backpacks, this will allow for prolonged wear without stress and pain.

Closeness between Mother and Baby: The baby, being closer to the mother’s body, will feel her warmth and feel a sense of security and love. Parents can also become more attentive to their children’s needs and meet them appropriately.

Convenience for the Wearer: The wearer will have their hands unoccupied and therefore will be able to do other activities while wearing his or her child.

Baby Positions

There are a number of different positions that a baby can assume while in a sling. These positions offer different comfort levels and purposes for the mother and baby, and there is no best option.

Vertical Position: The baby’s bottom will rest on the bottom of the sling facing the mother. His head will rest on the wearer’s upper chest. The top rail should cover most of all of the baby’s head for newborn carries, due to the lack of neck support at the young age. Older children will not need for their heads to be covered.

The Cradle Hold: The Cradle Hold is most popular for newborns, but also appropriate for older children or baby who are nursing. The baby’s feet should be at the rings of the sling. His or her head can be inside or outside of the sling, depending on what is most comfortable for the child.

Kangaroo Carry: The Kangaroo Carry works best for younger children who have head and neck control. The baby’s legs should be crossed “Indian style” and his or her back should be against the wearer’s chest.

Front Carry: The child should face sideways facing the rings. The bottom rail of the sling should come out towards the child’s knees. The baby’s arms may be inside or outside, depending on their current behavior levels.

Hip Carry: The Hip Carry is optimal for toddlers rather than babies. The child should straddle you while your hip support his or her weight. The bottom of the sling should extend to the child’s knees whereas the top rail should come to his or her shoulder blades.

Back Carry: The Back Carry is best for children who are above one year of age. It should only be used with a cooperative child, and until the wearer is accustomed to this carry, another person should help make sure the child is secure.

Top 5 Best Soft Baby Carriers

Finding the Perfect Baby Carriers

There are many alternatives to baby slings. Every person has their own preferences regarding comfort levels and weight distribution for a baby carrier, so the decision on which baby carrier to use is very subjective between different people. Some carriers have adjustable velcro or ring straps. Another comfort feature of some baby carriers is padding. After prolonged pressure or weight bearing, padding along the shoulder or hip can be very helpful. However, some slings are not adjustable, or simply tied on. Some carriers also come in different sizes. A mother should try on multiple sizes before buying a sling to ensure maximum comfort. Most support groups, including breastfeeding support groups and babywearing support groups, offer opportunities for new mothers to test out different baby carrier types before making their decisions. Many resources can also be found online.

Works Consulted

Bartlett, Rachel. "Babywearing Made Simple." Drjaygordon.com. Jay Gordon, MD, FAAP, 24Feb. 2010. Web. 21 Nov. 2016.

KellyMom. "Slings, Wraps & Other Baby Carriers -- Why, How & Where? • KellyMom.com."KellyMom.com. Ameda, 16 Feb. 2016. Web. 21 Nov. 2016.

Author Bio :

Michelle is a Marriage and Family Therapist. She works with couples or families who are seeking professional help in solving conflicts, improving communication or changing behavior. And works in mental health clinics, social outreach agencies, hospitals, institutions, and private practices. Therapy usually consists of talk sessions with patients, although the therapist's approach or style can vary; a marriage and family therapist may also make referrals to a psychologist or medical doctor for additional treatment.
Michelle Putz
Consultant Editor

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