More and more parents are realizing the immense benefits of wearing their baby. Among these benefits are less crying from your baby, the chance to bond with dad and other caregivers, and increased socialization. Read on to learn more about each of these benefits of babywearing.
Another benefit of babywearing is less crying from your baby. According to research, babies who are carried regularly cried an average of 43% less than those who weren’t. Many times babies are fed, changed, and burped, yet continue to cry. Often all they want is to be next to mom or another person. The attention given makes babies feel well-attended to, and the movement from walking resembles the movement the baby got used to while in the womb and so calms the baby down. Also, if there are any loud noises or other things that might scare or startle the baby if he was on his own, mom or dad is right there to offer comforting words and to calm the baby down.
Babies who are worn by their parents get the chance to experience socialization earlier than those who aren’t. Babies get to see others up close and watch facial expressions of family members and others as they interact with mom or dad. When carried in a cradle hold, where they are face-to-face with mom or dad, they get the benefits of a close up view of emotions and facial expressions.
Increased stimulation by the world around them
When babies are being carried in a sling, particularly in a position where they’re facing outwards, they can learn about the world from your perspective. Rather than laying in a crib or playpen staring at the ceiling, young babies are moving around and being exposed to the world around them. They experience how things move, cause and effect type situations, and they see what everyday life in their world is like. Also, because they are crying less, they have more time for looking around and taking in visual stimuli.
Especially in newborns, babywearing helps regulate their bodily processes such as breathing and heart rate. The person wearing the baby acts as an external regulator. The regular rhythms of parents’ breathing, walking, and heartbeat have a regulating effect on the baby’s irregular rhythms.
Increases hormone levels
Babywearing can help increase prolactin (important for breastfeeding) and oxytocin (important for feelings of well-being and happiness) in the mother. These can also help reduce the feelings of stress common in new moms.
According to Dr. William Sears, a leading attachment parenting expert, babywearing can help babies become smarter. This is due to the reasons stated above; the increased socialization and stimulation from the objects and people around them provide invaluable learning experiences starting from a young age.
More interaction with dad and other caregivers
Especially if mom is breastfeeding, dad and other family members probably don’t get much opportunity to bond with baby. By babywearing, your baby will get used to the unique rhythms of others, and being comforted by dad and others will help her bond with them.