Even though babies are pretty tiny, carrying your little one around constantly can leave you feeling sore and exhausted. To add to that, it can also be hard to multitask when your hands are busy holding your baby. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this – babywearing! To put it simply, babywearingmeans carrying a baby around on your body, either in a sling or some other kind of carrier. Babywearing has several physical and emotional benefits for both Mom and baby, and greatly helps in the bonding process.
We interviewed Mom blogger and babywearing advocate, Jinal Gada, to find out what makes babywearing so great and why Moms everywhere are raving about it.
Say hello to Jinal Gada – an educationist, fitness enthusiast, blogger (@foreversassymommy) and mom to a sweet little boy. She is also a huge advocate of babywearing. Read on to find out why Jinal highly recommends babywearing.
Q. Thanks for contributing to ‘Voice of Moms’, Jinal. How did you get introduced to babywearing and what made you try it out at first?
Ans. Firstly, I want to thank my friend Jasmeet (@mommyvoyage)who introduced me to babywearing. She added me to a WhatsApp group managed by‘Mumbai Sling library’ and I attended one of their meets while I was expecting my baby. That was a bonus since I could wrap my pregnant belly. I started babywearing him right from day 10. I would have loved to start earlier, but it is recommended that you start babywearing once the umbilical cord falls off.
Q. What are some of the situations in which you prefer babywearing and how has it made your life easier?
Ans. These days, baby wearing has become rare as my almost 23-month-old wants to explore and run around. But until he turned 1.5 years old, I preferred babywearing - I never stepped out without a carrier. I have never carried him in the traditional way, it’s only recently that I have started doing that. Babywearing walks are a great workout. It’s recommended not to cook while babywearing but I have done basic things like chopping or making the dough while babywearing.
Q. What are some of the key benefits of babywearing for both parent and baby?
Ans. The best part about babywearing is the skin-to-skin touch. In the first forty days, I use to wrap my baby in an Anmol hybrid wrap without wearing a t-shirt and dress him in just his diapers. This gave him a lot of skin-to-skin contact which is very good for the baby’s mental, emotional as well as physical health.
The other huge benefit is that the mom is free to do other things, while still keeping the baby close to her. You can go shop, work, work-out and do most things without worrying about carrying the baby around.
Babywearing carriers are fantastic sleeping machines - as soon as you put the baby in the carrier and walk around for a while, they are off to sleep. This has been a saviour on our bad days.
Q. What are some of the downsides of babywearing, if any?
Ans. I don’t see any downside of babywearing.
Q. What is the minimum age your baby should be when you start babywearing?
Ans. You can start as soon as the umbilical cord falls off.
Q. What were some of the apprehensions you had or myths you heard about baby wearing that got busted after you started it?
Ans. Frankly, I loved the concept of babywearing even before my baby arrived. I felt it was the easiest way to carry a baby. But Mumbai Sling Library introduced me to ergonomic baby wearing and I totally support it now.
An ergonomic carrier will provide better support for baby and will be more comfortable for the wearer as well.
Q. In what position do you normally carry your baby and what kind of baby carrier do you use?
Ans. I normally front carry my baby, facing inwards.In the initial months, I used a hybrid wrap. Every since my baby turned 6 months old, I have been using the Anmol baby carriers. But I do have a ring sling too which I used in between these. This was bought with fascination.
Q. Do you have any important tips that Moms can follow when trying this for the first time?
Ans. I would suggest that new moms try and attend the Sling Library meets held in their state/city to understand babywearing, try different kinds of carriers and then buy one that you find the most comfortable. But I highly suggest a hybrid wrap in the initial 6 months as it’s stretchy and very easily worn.
Q. Does your baby ever face any discomfort during the process of babywearing that you specifically need to watch out for?
Ans. In places with a very hot climate, babies may feel hot so you should try and wear breathable clothes and dress your baby in comfortable, breathable clothing as well. Pay attention to the kind of material that the carrier is made from, as it makes a lot of difference. Hybrid, full wrap conversions, linens are highly breathable and very comfortable fabrics.
Q. Can baby wearing be done single-handedly or do you need any kind of help to get the gear on?
Ans. It can be done single-handed.
Q. Does your husband babywear too? If yes, how has his experience been?
Ans. He doesn’t wear him very often but he wears him when we are out of town and travelling.
Q. Based on your experience, what advice would you give Moms who are interested in baby-wearing?
Ans. I would just say it’s the best thing that has happened to me and it can be for you as well. Just start doing it and you will see what a difference it makes.
In case you have any questions or queries about baby wearing, feel free to write below, and also do let us know how your baby wearing experience has been.
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