A newborn child wants and needs to be held, rocked, and touched. They are most happy and content when they are experiencing bodily contact and movement. Whether we use a carrier or not, we all want to show our love to our children through cuddles, nourishment, cradling and carrying. A baby carrier is just an extension of our natural desires to keep our baby happy and is the perfect solution for our child to remain close, calm, and gently stimulated with their caregiver.
Here’s why we at Brooke Maree we choose to wear our babies, and why you might like to as well…
A baby spends 9 months inside their mama, held tight and warm, in constant movement, listening to her heartbeat and feeling her breathing. Because of this, it’s quite unusual for new babies to be content on their own, without being carried or held constantly. Fortunately, babywearing mimics the womb environment, where babies are naturally inclined to relax and sleep.
It’s an undisputed fact that babies are happiest when being carried. Studies have shown that parents who wore their babies for 3 hours per day could reduce their baby’s crying by 43% in total, including 54% during the evening (the dreaded witching hours!).
As you can imagine, a happier baby who cries less means happier parents! Being able to respond quickly to your baby’s cues and settle them also helps parents to feel more confident in their skills as they adjust to their new role.
Forming a bond with your baby is a big reason to babywear. This is especially true with carers who can’t comfort through breastfeeding. Babywearing provides another way to form an attachment between the baby and their mum, dad, and other caregivers. Holding your baby close means plenty more opportunities to interact with, talk with, and observe your child, which is wonderful for their development.
New babies are extremely delicate. Wearing them in a baby carrier can help to protect their brand-new systems in many ways. Staying close to mum means that baby can feel her breathing (which in turn regulates baby’s breathing), feel her heartbeat, stay the right temperature, and remain calm, not wasting energy on crying for comfort. It also protects little ones from extra stimulation and reduces the likelihood of contact with germs and viruses that their systems can’t handle. For premature babies, physical touch and being held has been shown to improve health and weight gain.
You’re going to spend a lot of time carrying your baby, especially when they are small. It is much, much easier on your arms and overall posture to do it in a baby carrier! But even toddlers need to be carried a fair bit for comfort, and because their legs can’t really do long distances yet. Carrying your baby or toddler is so much more comfortable in a supportive, ergonomic carrier.
Going someplace? Whip out the carrier instead of a stroller. It’s quicker, more portable, and baby can go anywhere you’re able to walk normally. Stairs, grass, crowds, and narrow aisles aren’t really an issue anymore. A study has shown that convenience is the most common reason for babywearing.
It can be tough to get things done with a baby who wants to be held… all the time! Thankfully, being hands free means you can multi-task! Keeping them close in a baby carrier means you can get dinner prepared, the house in order, exercise, older kids entertained, and more. Life doesn’t have to stop every time your baby needs you to comfort them!
Parenting is often hard, especially with a newborn, but also as your child grows and develops into a toddler and small child. Babywearing is, quite frankly, one of the easiest ways to fulfil your child’s needs and feel like you are totally on top of this parenting thing!
Brooke Maree acknowledges the traditional roots of carrying babies and is deeply respectful and grateful to past and present cultures who continue to pass their knowledge on.
Honestly, if you’re not sure, the best thing you can do is give it a go. You and your child have SO much to potentially gain from babywearing. Ask a consultant for help or head to a babywearing meet to find out the best possible carriers to fit you and your child, and go from there. The benefits are 100% worth it!
 Hunziker UA, Garr RG. (1986) Increased carrying reduces infant crying: A random-ized controlled trial. Pediatrics 77:641-648
 Tessier R, M Cristo, S Velez, M Giron, JG Ruiz-Palaez, Y Charpak and N Charpak. (1998) Kangaroo mother care and the bonding hypothesis. Pediatrics 102:e17.
 Perinatol J. (1991) Current knowledge about skin-to-skin (kangaroo) care for pre-term infants. 216-26.