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Keeping Baby Close: The Importance of High-Touch Parenting

A couple of weeks ago, at the Hyatt Regency in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, some intriguing (but not really startling) data were presented at the annual Brain Development and Learning Conference: mothers who touch their babies more often can alter their offspring’s genetic expression and foster calmer babies who will grow up to be increasingly nurturing parents.  For those of us in the childbirth education arena, this is not surprising in the least.

For years, folks who promote safe, gentle birthing practices also tend to favor gentle parenting practices.  High-touch infant care falls under this category.  Famed pediatrician/author Dr. Sears calls it Attachment Parenting.  Others call it Kangaroo Mother Care (a philosophy which is often only thought of as being used with premies or newborns but can, in fact, be carried on throughout infancy).  Others, still:  Baby wearing.

The basic idea?  Keep your baby close by, offer skin-to-skin contact as a means of warming and/or comforting, bonding, teaching your child that you are there for her for the most basic of needs and that you are a tender, loving resource.

When our three kids were infants, we did the same thing I see thousands of other new parents doing:  we hauled our kids around in their detachable infant cars as if we were carrying around a utilitarian bucket of potatoes.  Because, let’s face it:  it’s easier, right?  No buckling and unbuckling the five-point harness every time we got in and out of the car.  No disturbing baby when he’s asleep in his bucket.

My friend who is an awesome mama, prenatal yoga instructor and doula, practiced baby wearing reverently with her two boys in their infancy.  As I observed her–always showing up with her little one snuggled into a wrap on her chest (or hip, as the baby grew) I pondered the realities:  doesn’t her back ever get sore?  Doesn’t she sometimes want her own space?

I imagine, the answer might have sometimes been ‘yes.’  But I also know that Gloria has a bond with her children like none other and was able to put aside the short term gains of her own comfort for the long term gains of what baby wearing likely fostered in the bond between mother and child.  And, I imagine, many “baby wearers” will tell you that they are comfortable wearing their babies–especially if fit with an appropriate sling/baby carrier.

Heres the thing:  with physical closeness comes psychological closeness, and you can bet those two boys of Gloria’s learned to trust their mama for their every need, early on.  Do kids who weren’t kept close as infants not trust their parents?  No, not necessarily.  But there are degrees of trust and psychological closeness and, where on that scale do you think a kiddo falls, who was kept close to his/her parents as an infant?  Just think of the inherent message baby wearing…attachment parenting…kangaroo care…sends:

I am here for you. Always. Your well-being is so important to me that I will make sure I am close by to recognize when you need something. You are not alone.

I also ponder the messages being sent to a baby who spends a ton of her time in her infant car seat:

My convenience is more important than your being comforted. I hold you (literally) at arm’s length because it is easier for me. I will take you with me according to my schedule (as opposed to being home for baby’s nap time–thus avoiding the concern about removing a sleeping baby from her car seat) rather than one that is more advantageous for you.

I know I am simplifying things here.  But really, when you consider implied messages contained in our daily actions, the messages we send can be deafening, and are sometimes different from that which we’d really like to be relaying.

I recently learned about a new product hitting the markets…designed for a similar rural population as the one I wrote about, here.  In an earnest attempt to create a life-saving product for premature babies born in developing countries  a product has been developed called the Embrace–a sleeping bag-looking “portable incubator” with a pocket in the back for an inserted heat pack.

I applaud the Stanford researchers who’ve come up with this, and their aggressive goal of saving hundreds of thousands of teeny tiny lives at $25 a pop (this is an entrepreneurial effort).  But I also have to wonder, what about good-old skin-to-skin contact?  Studies have repeatedly shown that babies’ body temperatures (and heart rate, breathing rate and blood sugar levels) remain more stable when held skin-to-skin vs. when placed in an incubator.  Would the money otherwise spent in R&D, developing new and newer baby warming technology be better spent on community health education campaigns, instead?  What do you think?

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  1. August 3rd, 2010 at 11:47 | #1

    I’m wearing mine right now. Otherwise, reading this would be impossible with a seven-week-old :)

  2. avatar
    Denise Hynd
    August 3rd, 2010 at 17:46 | #2

    Why are these Stanford Researchers ignoring all the studies and efforts of some many including UNICEf into Kangaroo Care – which started in Bogota in 1980′s? And I am disappointed that you did not add a link to one of the Kangaroo Care web sites like that of Nils Bergman in South Africa, especially to counter this unholistic approach to care of prem babies proposed by Stanford!!

  3. avatar
    Jill Moloney
    August 3rd, 2010 at 19:39 | #3

    I worked in Northern Uganda in a remote place affected by the war with the Lords Resistance Army. The local referral hospital had very limited electricity supply to run its incubators. To help to keep small/premature babies alive, they took them from their mothers and kept them warm with a heat pack. With Dr Nils Bergman’s assistance, I located two professionals who had experience of implementing Kangaroo Mother Care in the African context (one a neonatologist and the other a nurse). An intensive training was organised for the hospital staff, and Ministry of Health personnel also attended. Despite scepticism from some staff (and the organisation I was working for), the technique was implemented immediately in the maternity ward, much to the delight of the mothers and their families. The babies thrived and mortality rates fell to one quarter of the rate before this intervention. To introduce Stanford’s approach is a backward step for developing countries, and for more developed ones, too, for that matter.

  4. August 4th, 2010 at 09:37 | #4

    I’m so thankful for ACNM’s bring-your-baby-to-work policy. Babies are allowed to come to work until they are 6 months old. You can bet I’ll be wearing my baby at work for 6 months when my time comes. My boss is doing it now, and it’s working out wonderfully.

  5. August 4th, 2010 at 12:43 | #5

    This is a beautiful video and so encouraging to see. I agree Stanford’s approach is a backwards step. I’m glad to see baby-wearing picking up a bit in the U.S. We spent a little time in Burkina Faso, and everyone wears their babies there. Sometimes two at a time!

    I had not heard of any bring-your-baby-to-work policies. Is this in the U.S.? How exciting! I worked in a daycare prior to my baby’s birth. I was in the infant room, but if I wanted to bring my daughter to the center for care, they would have transferred me to another room so “I wouldn’t show favoritism”. No one is allowed to work in the same room as their children. As such, I quit and now do childcare in my own home.

    Thanks for this post!

  6. avatar
    sara
    August 4th, 2010 at 13:50 | #6

    I love wearing my daughter. It just seems so natural. I hardly ever see people in my area wearing babies- if anyone does it’s the dads with the Baby Bjorn carriers. Mothers always have strollers. Yet, I always get positive comments from people when I have on my mei tai or sling. I hope that more people will see how good it is for mom and babies to be close, and also convenient for parents who actually want to do things when their babies are tiny! I don’t know how I would have gotten laundry done without my carriers. And they are SO NICE for breastfeeding!

  7. avatar
    eli
    August 4th, 2010 at 21:16 | #7

    My one and a half years old is snuggled into the improvised sling (blanket) sleeping. It’s sooo sweet :)

  8. avatar
    Jocelyn
    August 5th, 2010 at 03:37 | #8

    I’ve beeen wanting to babywear as much as possible when we have children, but worry a bit about needing my own space. Fortunately my husband really wants to babywear also, and I think splitting the time between us will be more sustainable. I don’t think I could manage my desired level of attachment parenting alone.

    I guess the study was on rats, so not involving fathers/grandparents/others involvement in levels of touch, but is there support for this elsewhere?

  9. August 8th, 2010 at 07:29 | #9

    Thank you to all for your comments. I will respond to more directly next week, as I’m on the road and have only limited time/access to internet.

    Keep up the awesome attachment parenting! Your babies (and you) will benefit greatly from it…

  10. August 9th, 2010 at 13:36 | #10

    I saw different messages.

    Kimmelin opined:

    “Just think of the inherent message baby wearing…attachment parenting…kangaroo care…sends:

    I am here for you. Always. Your well-being is so important to me that I will make sure I am close by to recognize when you need something. You are not alone.”

    Maybe it says:

    “You are here for my benefit. Always. Close by so I don’t have to inconvenience myself by getting up, if you need something, although even though you are I can still ignore because I tell myself wearing you is basicially all I need to do. I don’t care that you might be more comfortable and sleep better in a carrier, I will make you sleep upright and squished (would you like that by the way). Plus, you are always a readily available prop for me to use to harp on my unusual, fringe beliefs to others. I was not together enough to keep on track with the grown-up world responsibilities, before you were born. Now you are here, I am really overwhelmed. So you will be dragged along everywhere to provide me a convenient excuse. I will make you sleep on a rigid schedule because I am already a basket case and can’t manage anything more. I use you. You are my excuse. You complete me.”

    Kimmelin also, no joke, came up with this one:

    “I also ponder the messages being sent to a baby who spends a ton of her time in her infant car seat:

    My convenience is more important than your being comforted. I hold you (literally) at arm’s length because it is easier for me. I will take you with me according to my schedule (as opposed to being home for baby’s nap time–thus avoiding the concern about removing a sleeping baby from her car seat) rather than one that is more advantageous for you.”

    Well, I pondered this.

    “I respond to your needs. In fact, I am so in tune with them, I realize sleeping in the recumbant position is something you might enjoy and find more comfortable than being thrown over my shoulder like a sack of potatoes. Having your tiny rib cage compressed in one of those slings can’t make it easy to breathe. I don’t confuse my needs for comfort and cuddling with yours. Even though I’d love to cuddle you all day, I realize that you need to sleep quite a bit at the beginning of this thing we call life. You are a wonderful addition to my life. Although your arrival required major adjustments on my part, I am not overwhelmed. I will make the adjustments, take care of all the details, so I can provide the best life for you. I will stay on schedule so that you don’t need to have a schedule yet! And you won’t miss any ZZZZs, in the process. There’s no “nap-time” at our house, because you sleep when you want and I will incorporate that into our lives. I’m the grown-up. I’m there for you.”

  11. August 10th, 2010 at 09:50 | #11

    @ Denise Hynd: While I did include the link to the Kangaroo Mother Care website, here it is again for you: http://www.kangaroomothercare.com/

    @ “b”: I’m curious if you are a parent and, if so, if you ever explored the practice of baby wearing? As I pointed out in my article, there likely are times when a parent who chooses to keep baby close DOES yearn for their own space, or the need to indulge in activities that would be unsafe for baby wearing (cooking, drinking a hot beverage, showering, driving, cleaning, etc.) and, when they do, they put the baby down in a safe place. In fact, baby wearers are not gluttons for punishment or psychologically unstable, needy folks as pointed out in “b”‘s fabricating description, “I was not together enough to keep on track with the grown-up world responsibilities, before you were born. Now you are here, I am really overwhelmed. So you will be dragged along everywhere to provide me a convenient excuse. I will make you sleep on a rigid schedule because I am already a basket case and can’t manage anything more. I use you. You are my excuse. You complete me.”.

    The truth of the matter is, most parents who choose to carry their infants/toddlers in baby carriers tend to be extremely intelligent, well-researched parents who have read numerous books and articles about the benefits of wearing their child(ren).

    The infant car seat, by the way, is not necessarily the safest place for an infant to sleep (neither is a swing). Some studies have shown that when an infant (who has little-to-no trunk musculature to hold their frame upright) sleeps in one of these places,they can slowly collapse their chest cavity down onto their abdomen–effectively suffocating themselves by disenabling their lungs to fully expand.* There are even some baby slings that pose a similar (but not the same) risk***, so researching which sling/wrap you aim to use is important–as baby wearers do.

    Perhaps this is the point “b” is trying to get at by saying, …”having your tiny rib cage compressed in one of those slings can’t make it easy to breathe.”

    Yep. The sling style of baby carriers can pose this risk–but not because baby’s rib cage is compressed…because baby’s face can become smothered by the loose material of the sling.**

    Here’s a great video demonstrating a baby placed APPROPRIATELY into an upright wrap–lungs and rib cage supported but not “compressed,” face unobstructed, baby content, parent hands-free:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CamfWi0cEU8

    As to your concerns regarding, “I don’t confuse my needs for comfort and cuddling with yours…” I can tell you that:

    1) babies kept as close to their parents as baby wearing facilitates tend to be calmer, happier, more content, less fussy babies.**** And, yes, this also fulfills a need for the parent(s): having a less fussy baby IS comforting and calming. Hearing your own child cry is upsetting (and for good reason–nature created it that way). Being physically close to one’s child boosts Oxytocin levels in mothers–the hormone of maternal love and bonding, among other purposes. I can guarantee you that having your baby in his infant car carrier in the next room does not boost “happy” hormone levels. And, besides, why is the parent’s well-being and comfort level NOT important? A calm, comforted parent makes for a better parent.

    Thank you to everyone else for your anecdotes of baby wearing!

    *http://www.medpagetoday.com/Pediatrics/GeneralPediatrics/6199

    **http://www.csmonitor.com/Money/new-economy/2010/0324/Infantino-baby-sling-recall-Is-your-baby-carrier-on-the-list

    ***http://infantstoddlers.suite101.com/article.cf/baby_wearing_facts_and_myths

    ****http://www.thebabywearer.com/articles/WhyTo/GreatThings.htm

  12. August 10th, 2010 at 13:33 | #12

    No Kimmelin beleives that this was a summary:
    “Some studies have shown that when an infant (who has little-to-no trunk musculature to hold their frame upright) sleeps in one of these places,they can slowly collapse their chest cavity down onto their abdomen–effectively suffocating themselves by disenabling their lungs to fully expand.*”

    of this: (see text below)
    *http://www.medpagetoday.com/Pediatrics/GeneralPediatrics/6199

    A rather creative interpretation of this article, which says no such thing. (no wonder you don’t like links) It says that about 1/2 had cranio-facial deformities that made a natural upper airway obstruction, the rest were unexplained.

    —————————————-

    Newborns placed in a sitting position — in car seats, baby carriers, or infant seats, for example — may have an increased risk of sudden infant death, researchers reported here. Action Points
    ——————————————————————————–

    Explain to interested patients that car safety seats are still recommended for use with all infants.

    Explain to interested patients that pediatricians can conduct a car seat challenge for premature infants or infants with upper airway obstruction to confirm the safety of placement in a car seat.
    A review of 508 deaths of infants younger than one year found that 17 deaths occurred when infants were in “sitting devices” and 10 of those deaths were unexplained, according to Aurore Côté, M.D., of McGill University Health Center, and colleagues, in a study published online by Archives of Disease in Childhood.

    The authors said the greatest risk was for infants younger than one month, noting that six of the 64 infants who died within a month of birth (9.4%), were in the “seat group, whereas only 11 of the 444 infants older than one month (2.4%) were in the seat group, which represents an RR of 3.80 for the sitting position and is highly significant (P=0.006).”

    When they categorized all deaths as explained or unexplained, 49 unexplained deaths had occurred in infants younger than one month and five of those infants were sitting at time of death, for an RR of 7.35 (P<0.001). "This clearly suggests a much higher risk for the sitting position for infants less than one month of age," they wrote.

    The retrospective cohort study included all cases of unexpected deaths in infants younger than one in Quebec over a 10-year period (January 1991-December 2000).

    Overall, deaths while sitting accounted for only 3% of the total deaths during the first year of life and, the authors said, "premature infants do not account for an excess number of deaths in the sitting group."

    Michael Anderson, M.D., a pediatric intensive care specialist at Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital in Cleveland, cautioned against over interpreting the study findings.

    He pointed out that the "numbers are very, very small" and warned that parents should be reassured that car seats remain the safest way to transport infants.

    The authors suggest two factors that could explain the excess deaths in newborns — the fact that prolonged apnea, bradycardia, and drops in oxygen levels are most common during the first month of life and decrease thereafter and the length of time that the infant spent sitting, especially babies who had evidence of upper airway obstruction.

    They said that five of the infant deaths occurred in babies who had been sitting for several hours and had laryngomalacia or other cranio-facial anomaly.

    The authors said that an earlier study found that using an insert that holds an infant's head in a neutral position during sleep while in car seats reduced the number and severity of episodes of lowered oxygenation.

    These inserts are currently recommended for use with premature infants, and are available at stores that sell baby equipment.

    Dr. Anderson said that in the United States it is routine practice for pediatricians to conduct at "car seat challenge" before hospital discharge for premature infants or babies with upper airway obstruction.

    During a car seat challenge the infant is placed in the car seat and then vital signs are carefully monitored for a time period that would correspond with the time required for the trip between the hospital and the infant's home.

    The authors said their study was limited by the lack of a control group of healthy living infants, but they said that infants for whom a cause of death was found served as a nominal control group.

    The study was funded by the Respiratory Health Network of the Fonds de la recherché en santé du Quebec. Drs. Côté and Anderson reported no financial conflicts.

  13. avatar
    b
    August 11th, 2010 at 06:19 | #13

    Kimmelin, blissfully unaware of her double standard, proclaimed as fact without support:

    “In fact, baby wearers are not gluttons for punishment or psychologically unstable, needy folks as pointed out in “b”’s fabricating description,”

    So, let me see if I understand you clearly. YOU can fabricate descriptions of other people, but they may not do the same to you. Your descriptions are law, truth, etc. others’ are well, fabrications.

    Nice double standard, there.

    “The truth of the matter is, most parents who choose to carry their infants/toddlers in baby carriers tend to be extremely intelligent, well-researched parents who have read numerous books and articles about the benefits of wearing their child(ren).”

    Too bad you don’t read your own articles.

    http://www.medpagetoday.com/Pediatrics/GeneralPediatrics/6199

    “Some studies have shown that when an infant (who has little-to-no trunk musculature to hold their frame upright) sleeps in one of these places,they can slowly collapse their chest cavity down onto their abdomen–effectively suffocating themselves by disenabling their lungs to fully expand.*”

    Uuhhhh, I believe that is what happens more often in a sling. You know, that part I said about having baby’s chest compressed? See govenment warnings related to that above.

    What you cited really it wasn’t a study at all. It is a news article about a study. It reports that some of infants who died in carseats had congential deformities that blocked the upper airway and the others were under a month, but unknown.

    The original abstract’s results section says this:

    http://adc.bmj.com/content/93/5/384.abstract

    “Of the 508 deaths reviewed, 409 were unexplained and 99 were explained after investigation. Seventeen deaths occurred in a sitting device, of which 10 were unexplained. There was no excess of premature infants dying. However, there was an excess of infants of less than 1 month of age found to have died in a sitting position in the unexplained death group. In addition, three infants who died in a sitting position had an increased risk of upper airway obstruction.

  14. avatar
    b
  15. August 13th, 2010 at 13:25 | #15

    My son has been carried since birth. We have a wide variety of carriers, from a MeiTei, to a wrap, to an ergobaby carrier. My husband and I both enjoy carrying him and when we do need our own space, we just swap. Our son gets carried borth front and back and because we researched thouroughly how to carry babies in a secure way, he never had any issues. We always get comments on how calm and smiling he is and people actually ask us if he ever cries… It’s actually very convenient too. I use public transportation a lot and those huge strollers take up a lot of space on the bus. Wearing baby just makes it much more convenient for everyone, and he feels more secure that way.
    Babies have been worn for centuries in many different cultures and I haven’t yet heard of a study that links those practices to rib cage collapse. I’m aware of some deaths related to babies in bag-type slings but I think they have more to do with our society having forgotten the way to properly carry babies…I think we need to rethink the way we consider touch. Touch is not inappropriate with young babies, it’s vital.

  16. August 13th, 2010 at 14:10 | #16

    Elodie: A beautiful example of baby wearing! And yes, babies have been carried/worn for centuries (and still are in many cultures). Going back to the basics is not always a bad thing.

  17. avatar
    b
    August 14th, 2010 at 07:56 | #17

    This was supposed to have been comment 13. It shows that studies indicate any more upright positioning in any type of baby gear could cause breathing problems. Baby wearing is non-stop as opposed to occasional sub-optimal positioning.

    Plus, case reports have shown the curled position that can be caused by slings alone has caused some deaths. No studies — most people don’t wait for stuff like that to not do things that could kill their babies — the govt. issued warnings on slings. The facts are the opposed of what was proffered by this author on her blog and her comments.

    Well, I don’t know if I can compete with high-powered medical journals such as The Christian Science Monitor and Baby Wearer.com.

    http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/110/2/401

    “Positioning young infants in devices such as swings, infant carriers, backpacks, or slings may have similar physiologic effects in susceptible infants to positioning semireclined in car safety seats, and consideration should also be given to limiting the use of these devices as well.”

    Meaning there’s been no direct research on these (obscure fringe practices don’t get studied much), but they share the salient feature of carseats — upright positioning. Obviously, the bio-physics of being more vertical verses semi-reclined are worse and the support (or lack thereof) of a soft backing leads to suffocation from rib cage/airway compression from the curved positions the soft back can cause doesn’t register here.

    Here’s a news article about those light-weight government officials issuing formal warnings. I mean, not as good a source as suite101.com, but ya know.

    http://www.king5.com/health/childrens-healthlink/Govt-to-warn-on-baby-slings-because-of-deaths–87144607.html

    “It’s the “C-like” position that causes safety advocates to shudder. They say the curved position can cause the baby, which has little head and neck control in the early months, to flop its head forward, chin-to-chest — restricting the baby’s ability to breathe.

    Another concern: that the baby can turn its face toward mom’s chest or belly and smother in the parent’s clothing.”

    There’s no studies, because the common-sensy type folks just react to the case reports and take action. Silly us.

    Kimmelin who never gives up on this non-sense continues:

    “Being physically close to one’s child boosts Oxytocin levels in mothers–the hormone of maternal love and bonding, among other purposes. I can guarantee you that having your baby in his infant car carrier in the next room does not boost “happy” hormone levels.”

    Even better sources. None and your guarantees.

    I can guarantee that “happy hormones” are not increased if the baby dies from being a in a sling. I can also guarantee that “natural” fanatics will say “yeah, but the experience was worth it.”

  18. avatar
    Crystal
    August 15th, 2010 at 18:36 | #18

    An extraordinary thing happens when you are in constant contact with your baby, your devotion and attachment and love grows. My 4th child has been almost constantly with me since birth, and unlike my emotions with my more traditionally raised children, I’ve never been consumed with the idea that I need “me” time, space, relief. In fact, it feels wrong without her in my arms.
    I love to read Michel Odent’s work along this line…

  19. avatar
    Anna
    August 15th, 2010 at 19:31 | #19

    If I remember correctly, the sling deaths were one kind of sling that places the baby down around the mother’s waist. When properly placed, the baby’s face is not covered by the sling or the mother’s clothing and their airway is not constricted. They baby will also be in a position very close to the mother (not way down by her waist) where she can feel every breath. If the baby stops breathing, she’ll feel it and rouse the baby. With the baby way down by the waist (and padding in between the baby and mother’s body), the mothers could not feel that their baby had stopped breathing.

  20. avatar
    Nurse
    August 18th, 2010 at 17:29 | #20

    I ‘wore’ both my girls, and recommend the sling (when worn properly) to everyone I meet with infants or pregnant. It’s pretty easy to recommend, especially when I have my 2 1/2 year old in it!

  21. August 20th, 2010 at 15:31 | #21

    You are saying such basic things it seems like it would be obvious right? Sadly I see EVERY woman and girl around with a baby – still packing that infant seat around rather than being in contact with the baby in it. I practiced attachment parenting without realizing it was called that or that anyone else did it. And yes, I do believe the bond between my children and I is stronger than what I typically see. I did it 25 years ago with my first two children, and did it again with my second family twenty years after the first. The second time around, I had to work full time, so as soon as I got the babies(then toddlers, now big boys)home I would put them in the sling or otherwise carry them. My sons are now 4 and 5 and as soon as I get home, I physically carry them. Because I am gone so many hours a day (necessity) I make sure they still get skin to skin contact. When I walk in the door they are whining and complaining. After skin to skin contact, they are calmer and seem reassured and not so anxious or grouchy. It works!

  22. avatar
    Jessica
    September 8th, 2010 at 14:51 | #22

    I just found this blog and found it very interesting. I apologize for coming so late to the discussion!

    My first is 15 months old now, and I wore her very, very often as a newborn. We had a Maya wrap first and then a Mei Tai-style carrier. We just got a stroller for her last week, and that mainly because (1) she now weighs 21 pounds, and even in the Mei Tai that can be a challenge over long distances, and (2) we are about to get a replacement for our infant (bucket) seat, so no more Snap ‘n’ Go. So, yes, I think babywearing is incredibly valuable and I’m glad for that time I get to spend in skin-to-skin contact.

    However. There is not a dichotomy here. It is not babywearers versus infant-car-seat users; any one set of parents can balance both. To characterize people who let the child sleep in the infant car seat (as opposed to taking them out and waking them up? is that really better for the infant?) as selfish is not fair, and more practically, contributes to the off-putting stereotype of babywearers/breastfeeders/natural-childbirth advocates as Holier Parents Than Thou. (And as far as “being home for baby’s nap time” — if you know the secret for keeping my kid from falling asleep during a 5-minute car ride to the park or playgroup, please do share it with me. Otherwise we’re stuck at home as she transitions from two naps to one, and it’s driving me nuts.)

    I like babywearing. I like keeping my girl near me. I don’t like using babywearing as an excuse to consider myself superior to other parents, because I know I’m not.

  23. avatar
    olive
    September 10th, 2010 at 19:00 | #23

    interesting information about infant development (spinal, hip, respiration, etc.)and upright position
    http://www.sleepywrap.com/Research/uprightposition.pdf
    yes, the sleepywrap is a baby carrier, but the product they are selling is essentially a long piece of fabric (anyone can make one cheap).

    safety and babywearing
    addresses sling recalls, and give safety tips
    http://www.undercovermother.net/2010/03/babywearing-real-deal-on-safety.html

    things babies shouldn’t sleep in:
    http://www.idph.state.ia.us/hcci/common/pdf/sleep_positioning.pdf
    second page is a list of examples of babies who died of strangulation or asphyxia while sleeping in various pieces of equipment.

    bottom line is, be constantly aware of your infant. what better way than having her right on your chest?

  1. August 16th, 2010 at 22:07 | #1
  2. November 13th, 2010 at 12:18 | #2