Home & Garden Home Need a Hand? Try Babywearing By Jenn Savedge Writer University of Strathclyde Ithaca College Jenn Savedge is an environmental author and lecturer. She’s a former national park ranger who has written three books on eco-friendly living our editorial process Jenn Savedge Updated August 22, 2019 Carry your baby wherever you go. (Photo: neslinglibrary/Pixabay) Share Twitter Pinterest Email Home Family Pest Control Natural Cleaning DIY Green Living Thrift & Minimalism Sustainable Eating There is nothing quite like the feel of a new baby in your arms. And from that first moment, it will be hard to imagine a time when you will ever want to put your baby down. And then reality sets in (in the form of the laundry, the dishes or the dinner plates) and you you will realize that if you are ever going to get anything done, you may have to figure out a way to put your baby down, or freeing up your arms. That's where baby wearing comes in. Many new parents use a sling or other baby wearing device to combine the joy of holding their babies with the reality of needing their hands free to accomplish tasks throughout the day. Babywearing: Aids in bonding between parent and baby Provides a safe a secure environment for baby Offers a convenient way for parents to hold baby Helps to soothe and comfort a fussy baby Helps new moms shed baby weight Studies show that babies who are carried cry an average of 43 percent less overall and 54 percent less during the evening hours (that magic cranky time for babies) than those who are not. Types of Babywearers A few things to keep in mind when looking for a babywearer are the product’s ease of use and adaptability to differing situations and positions. A traditional sling is nothing more than a long piece of fabric that can be worn around the body and tied in such a way that it provides a safe, snuggly cocoon for the baby. Depending upon the situation and the baby’s preferences, slings can be worn on the front, back, or side, with the baby lying down or in an upright position. If you’ve never worn a sling before, it may feel cumbersome or confusing at first. Talk to friends, family, or your midwife about the best ways to secure a sling properly and safely. Check out The Babywearer to learn about diagnosing and solving common sling-wearing problems. Other popular babywearers are the front packs that can be worn across the chest and allow babies to sit upright in either a forward or backward position. Going For The GreenOnce you’ve decided on the style of babywearer you’d like to use to carry your baby, go for the green by lessening the impact of the item on the planet. Look for a gently used babywearer from friends, family members, the local thrift store, or a yard sale. You could also try posting a request on Freecycle to see if anyone in your local area is interested in giving one a way. If you do decide to purchase new, look for a babywearer made from 100 percent natural fibers such as cotton or hemp that are certified organic. Check out Pretty Momma Sling, The Sling Station or ERGObaby for slings and baby carriers made from organic fibers.