I love baby wearing. I’ve done it since TJ was born and I still sometimes carry both (3 and 1) in carriers. Though not TJ too often because I try to encourage him to walk whenever possible! Feeling them so close to you just feels so good. Plus it gives you 2 hands which is a BIG help for getting stuff done – especially when your little one is small! TJ regularly had long sleeps in my material wrap as a baby and will still now fall asleep on my back in the Tula Toddler sling. Izzy likes to be a little more “free”, but there are still times she asks to go in it.
Baby wearing can, however, alter your posture and that is bad news for your healing core system.
Between 60 – 100% of moms will suffer from diastasis recti (“DR”) post baby. DR is when the left and right rectus abdominis move further apart from the linea alba (to accommodate your growing baby) causing the linea alba to be stretched and weakened. Technically, and so that we can say if someone has DR, you are classed as having DR if the gap is more than 2 finger widths. The depth of the gap and its functionality is however also key.
If you want to read more about what diastasis recti (“DR”) is click HERE and you may also be interested in my blogs High Heels and Posture, Running Post Baby, 5 steps for your post baby body, Minding and closing the gap and Getting back to core workouts post birth.
Healing DR is about doing the right exercises to promote strengthening (like The Fit Moms Core Plan), but also how you move 24/7. If you are wearing your baby in a carrier for prolonged periods it can delay healing. Why? Because (a) baby carrying tends to alter your posture (and not in a good way) and (b) the weight of baby puts pressure on your connective tissue (linea alba) that is trying to heal and strengthen.
Above are two pictures of how baby wearing can alter your posture for the worse. I say “better” for the right pic as you can see even thinking about it there is a bit of a sway back!
So if you have DR:
1. watch your posture. Look in the mirror and consciously think about how you are standing. Do NOT push your hips forward, sway your back backwards, tuck your bottom. Think about your ear, shoulder, hip, knee and heel forming a vertical line (swipe left to see).
2. wear baby for limited times while healing DR. Where possible get Dad to carry!
3. Once baby is old enough (each carrier will vary on appropriate age) carry them on your back as this promotes the best posture.
4. Carrying baby on the front with baby facing outwards seems to promote the worst posture so avoid it unless you can master good posture.
5. You may find you need to switch brands and types as baby grows. I liked the material wraps like @boba when they were younger for getting cosy and spreading the weight of my heavy babies across my back. Now I use a @tulababycarriers Toddler Carrier that I find more comfortable for toddlers because they have more freedom.
6. watch the height of baby in the sling and be careful not to be looking down all the time! I know you want to gaze at them, but not good for your posture. You should be able to kiss the top of baby’s head. Lower will increase bad posture and lower back pain.
Any questions feel free to ask.