Babywearing during pregnancy brings joy not only to a healthy pregnant woman but also to her children. They need their mother’s closeness, especially in the months when their world is about to change. The arrival of a new baby is stressful for the whole family. Babywearing is sometimes simply a way to survive a rough day and other times it gives you a safer option than holding your toddler’s hand next to a busy road.
During the first trimester, there are no restrictions when it comes to the type of carrier or carrying position. You can do anything you like as long as your stomach isn’t overly sensitive, in which case you should avoid carrying in the front.
If your doctor forbids you to lift heavy loads, you should minimise babywearing as soon as possible! There are other ways to bond with your older child and soon enough you will be carrying a newborn next to your heart.
As the pregnancy progresses, we are becoming increasingly aware of the limitations of our bodies and that pregnancy isn’t the overly romanticised state of bliss for most women.
Listen to both your doctor and your body. For your own safety and the safety of your older child, avoid babywearing on the days when your blood pressure is lower than usual or you feel weak or dizzy. Those days will tend to be more commonplace as the pregnancy nears its end.
If you’ve given birth more than once and haven’t been engaged in a regular physical activity, be aware of a possibly shortened cervix or a weakened pelvic floor. If your doctor hasn’t forbidden you to lift heavy loads, you can still babywear over very short periods of time and increase the duration steadily in order to condition your body.
Remember, an active pregnancy makes the delivery and recovery much easier!
At the end of the second and during the third trimester, it is recommended to babywear on your back or in the hip position if it feels comfortable. Most women will miss wearing in the front but they will make up for it quickly once their new bundle of joy arrives. The most comfortable options are multi-pass carries in a woven wrap that simultaneously support your stomach or spread the weight evenly over your torso, thus creating a counterweight for your large bump.
You can also use an SSC with the waistbelt above or below your belly. I prefer wearing very high on the back, with the waistbelt placed firmly on my ribcage.
If you are careful and follow some useful tips, babywearing during a healthy pregnancy can be an activity that benefits you and your whole family. ?
Iris Bozic is an experienced babywearing instructor that cherishes others and puts their needs before hers. She’s organizing free workshops to spread the good news about babywearing.
Thank you, Iris, for all your involvement!