Saturday, October 3, 2009
Which Baby Carrier Is For You?
Many mamas (and papas) are overwhelmed by the different types and many choices in the babywearing world. Because of the many different brands and types of carriers, babywearers can end up with a carrier that doesn't work well for them or their child. I'm going to try to demystify the many carriers out there on the market today by giving a short description or definition of each type.
A SLING can come in two forms: a pouch sling or a ring sling. A pouch sling is a carrier that must be fitted specifically to the babywearer's body. It is a very simple type of carrier that drapes over one shoulder and it folds up very small to fit in a diaper bag easily. Babies can be worn in five different positions in a pouch sling. A ring sling is an adjustable sling that adjusts with a ring at the babywearer's shoulder. This carrier is much easier to fit different types of bodies. Wear your baby in the same positions that the pouches offer. Wear newborns through toddlers in a sling. Brand examples: Slinglings and Taylormade
A MEI TAI is an Asian style baby carrier that has ties that go around your waist and over your shoulders. This carrier can be worn on your front, back or hip and is good for newborns through toddlers. Some mei tais even allow babywearers to wear their babies in the front facing out position. Mei tai baby carriers are lightweight and are adjustable so that more than one person can wear them. Brand examples: Freehand, Babyhawk
A WRAP is simply a piece of fabric that wraps around your upper body to support the baby in place. Wear your baby or child in several different position with a wrap. Depending on the type of fabric used, a wrap can be one of, if not the most supportive type of baby carrier. Wraps can be used with newborns through toddlers. Brand examples: Sleepy Wrap, Didymos
A SOFT STRUCTURED CARRIER is a buckle carrier that can be worn on the front, back or hip. It is adjustable to more than one babywearer. Many have sleeping hoods that give support to baby's heads while sleeping in a carrier. A soft structured carrier keeps the baby in a natural seated position and gives their hips and spine support while being worn. Brand examples: ERGO Baby Carrier, Action Baby Carrier