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Babywearing, including baby carriers, slings and wraps are a wonderful way to carry your baby whilst enjoying being hands-free. It's also a wonderful way for you, your partner or your loved ones to bond and cuddle up close with your little one. International Babywearing Week aims to celebrate and promote the many benefits of babywearing.
The practice of babywearing actually dates back centuries. Across the world women have chosen to carry their babies close to their chest as they go about their everyday activities. There are a plethora of emotional, physical and practical benefits to babywearing, including fewer tears (hurrah!) and healthier, happier babies and parents all-round.
International Babywearing Week (IBW) takes place from the 1st to the 9th of October and aims to celebrate, promote, advocate for, and focus media attention on the many benefits of babywearing. Some of these benefits include:
A controlled study done in 1986 found that carrying an infant 2 additional hours per day reduced crying overall by 43%, or one whole hour. Babywearing also helps promote skin-to-skin contact and babies are proven to need warmth and comfort, so being in a baby carrier helps to support this.
Babywearing also has wonderful physical benefits for babies as upright carrying promotes healthy digestion and can help to prevent physical abnormalities associated with babies who spent large amounts of time lying on their back.
Using a baby carrier, sling or wrap can give parents free hands and extra freedom, whilst still having their baby close. It allows parents to get on with everyday tasks such as washing the dishes or making a meal and it's perfect for parents with older children who need extra hands! A number of carriers, slings and wraps also allow for breastfeeding in them.
If you're going to start babywearing, first you need to equip yourself with the tools. There are a range of different types of baby carrier available, and which one suits you is ultimately down to personal preference. Here's our guide on baby carriers to get you started on your babywearing journey.
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