From the start, I knew that I wanted to use a baby carrier. Baby carriers allow your little one to snuggle up against you, and give you the use of both hands – and the ability to walk around! This was especially necessary when my second child was born. He spent many, many hours peacefully sleeping against me on the soccer field, at the grocery store, on walks, playing games.
It was easy for me to decide that I wanted to use a baby carrier. But when I went to actually use a carriers, I was at a loss. Most of them involved adjustment, and seemed pretty complicated. Now, two babies and four carriers later, I thought I would share some tips for baby wearing.
Baby Wearing Tips and Tricks
- Use online resources: When I received 2 new carriers before my second child was born, I was very confused about how to use them. There are many great online instructions and videos that show you step by step how to adjust your carriers. Use them!
- Practice: Try it first without the baby. Trust me, you don’t want to be out with your baby, thinking you’re going to use your baby carrier for the first time. I practiced first at home, sitting on a bed. Then I practiced by sticking a stuffed animal in (yes, I really did). Then I tried it with the actual baby, with my husband’s help, while sitting on the bed. I kept putting the baby in the carrier on the bed until I was comfortable doing it alone.
- Do what feels comfortable: One of my baby carriers was bothering me a bit wearing it around the house. I brought it with us on a trip to a museum, thinking it was only for a short time, and it would be fine. It was not fine! My back ached by the end of the trip.
- Pay attention to size limits: For both of my sons, we inadvertently forgot to adjust the carriers as they grew. I used the newborn insert for my Ergo well past the recommended weight, and we forgot to adjust the height strap on the Baby Bjorn as my son grew. This seems obvious, but in the depths of newborn sleep deprivation it’s easy to overlook this, and it can cause a safety concern.
- Ask around: There are so many baby carriers on the market. And they’re not cheap. Ask friends what they think, which ones they recommend.
- Borrow: If you have friends with baby carriers they aren’t using, ask if you can borrow them, even for a few days. That will give you enough time to try out the carrier, and see if it’s the right choice for you. For cheaper options, you can also try second hand stores. We have a local second hand store specializing in baby items. You could check online for something similar.
- Adjust: The baby carrier should be comfortable. If it’s not, chance are it’s not adjusted properly. Ask your partner or a friend to help you adjust.
Did you use a baby carrier? I would love to hear any helpful insight you have as well!
Looking for baby and toddler play ideas? Check out Zero to Two: the book of play, an e-book I co-authored! It’s includes 25 step-by-step tutorials with pictures, as well as links to over 50 more ways to play with babies and toddlers – all for $8.99.