Baby expects to be close to his or her mother’s body since birth, carrying allows the baby to have everything it needs, its mother’s warmth, the feeling of safety and security, and many other impulses, that are needed for the right development of the brain and its entire being. In its mother’s arms, everything feels just right.
Mommies and Daddies now have a wide selection of baby carrying devices, the popular ones are carriers, wraps, and ring slings. If you want the carrying be practical and also safe, it is important to choose ergonomic carriers, to ensure that the baby is in a healthy position while being carried. When it comes to wraps, it is also very important to keep an eye on the right ergonomic position of the baby in it. In order to wear the baby safely it is important to choose ergonomic carriers to ensure that the baby maintains its correct posture. However, there are carriers available on the market which do not support or maintain baby’s correct posture, these carriers are called Narrow based carriers (NBC)
Why is NBC not suitable?
Many people who do not have experience with baby carrying have a tendency to go for NBC carriers, this was especially the case in the in past when these type of carriers were just launched. Fortunately, nowadays more and more people prefer ergonomic carriers as Narrow based carriers do not meet the basic principles of ergonomic carrying.
So what are the principles of proper baby carrying?
- The baby must sit in the so-called “M” position. If you move from one knee to another, across the buttocks, you should literally “draw” the letter M. During ergonomic carrying, the baby is facing and leaning on the parent.
- The carrier or the wrap has to reach the baby’s knees. If it only extends up to the thighs, the legs are not properly supported, resulting in an non-ergonomic position.
- It is very important for the baby in a carrier or in a wrap to have a slightly rounded back, which is the best position for baby’s spine. Such slight rounding simulates the position in which the baby was placed in the uterus. It is therefore completely natural.
- If the baby can’t hold its head yet, it is important that it is properly supported. Carriers are equipped with a hood, which can be rolled to support the head effectively. It can also act as a “pillow” if the baby falls asleep. In the case of wraps, you can roll a small towel or the actual wrap so it supports the head. However, it is better if the baby can simply lean on the parent while sleeping.
- Choosing an appropriate size is also very important. If you prefer to carry your baby in a wrap, you do not have to worry about choosing a size because the wrap does not have a backrest. However, the wrap’s carrying capacity is important, which is based on the weight and the type of cloth used to make the wrap. You can put the baby in a position you need, and make the wrap perfectly fit your size and the size of the baby. On the other hand not all carriers are suitable for babies from birth. For infants and small babies, please select a Baby size carrier, you can choose the Toddler size for bigger children. Some models are designed for newborns only with a newborn insert (Manduca, Ergobaby Original, Ergobaby Organic, Tula), Fidella and Storchenwiege, carriers can be used without it.
After reading these principles, it’s clear at the first glance that NBCs do not meet them. The baby does not face the parent in NBC. This basic fact that makes the NBCs non-ergonomic. Why?
- The baby’s legs are freely hanging, which does not allow the hip joints to develop properly.
- By facing away from the parent’s body the baby is inhibited from having a rounded back.
- The weight of the baby is not evenly distributed because the baby basically hangs on its genitals and its head pushes on the spine that is still developing. The spine is not fixed by the carrier, therefore, it deflects to the side and hence it can be damaged.
- The baby is exposed to psychological overload because of the enormous number of motions from the surroundings, which are perceived by all its senses.
- The baby cannot rest the head when it wants to sleep because it is facing away from the parent.
- The carrier also has an unhealthy effect on the person who carries, as the weight of the child is not evenly distributed, so the shoulders are mainly burdened and it can also cause backache.