Ah, the benefits of babywearing!
Does infant carrying promote attachment? Studies point to yes.
Babywearing reduces crying in babies.
Does wearing your premie cause them to get less oxygen? Nope.
Does babywearing indicate a less violent culture? Quite possibly!
Links to more studies.
Besides health advantages, for me babywearing has also brought social advantages. Margaret sleeps much better when she is attached to me- even to the point of sleeping through all three hours of church occasionally! I rarely have to leave to walk her to sleep in the halls at church- and when I do, she'll fall asleep within 5-10 minutes in the sling and so I don't miss much.
Also, airport security is a breeze with her attached to me. They let families with small children skip ahead in the lines because of toddlers and strollers and such. Having Margaret attached to me meant that I could just walk through without any hassles. My friend Alisa has written about bringing toddlers and babies on trips with slings.
We live in a small space: it's a studio apartment. We don't have a lot of room to store baby stuff. Margaret is 7 months old and we still haven't bought a stroller (where on earth would we put it?) Slings and wraps fold up and sit in a drawer very nicely.
Babywearing is great for outings and events where there are lots of people. You can maneuver a baby in a sling much easier than a baby in a stroller- go up and down stairs, through crowds, tight spaces. My friends with toddlers say it's nice for them because they don't have to worry about their child dashing through crowds and chasing them down. Slings are also nice when you're using public transportation like buses and trains.
Warmth. We've taken Margaret camping and stargazing up in the mountains and I didn't have to worry about her being too cold- being up tight against me means that she gets to be warm. I look forward to using this method of keeping her warm all winter.
Communication. One of the most singular characteristics that Margaret possesses is a fascination with people and conversations. Yesterday at the aquarium, I was showing her the fish thinking that she'd love to watch the bright colors and movement. More than once while I was pointing to fish I would notice her turned to watch a person or conversation instead. With the sling she's up at eye level with the rest of us. She loves to watch and follow conversations. She listens to the lessons at church better than I do: she watches the speaker, then when someone has a comment, she wants to turn and watch them and then will go back to watching the speaker. At a very young age, she is learning about taking turns in conversations and about facial expressions. I really feel that she came wired to communicate- it's a very innate part of her personality and wearing her has given her the opportunity to observe and participate with conversations regularly at a very young age.
I've also been able to continue to do things that I did prior to being a mom- I've helped people in the ward pack and move because she's tied to me, I've used a sewing machine with her asleep in a wrap. I do the laundry at the laundromat with her on my back.
Tomorrow there will be a post from a friend of mine who will discuss how babywearing has helped her with caring for her 3 children- all aged 3 and under.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Ah, the benefits of babywearing!