The main reason for me why parents should learn about babywearing before they have their baby is to be more prepared for the fourth trimester.
The fourth trimester describes the first three months after a baby has been born. Developmentally, babies would benefit from staying in their mother’s womb longer than nine months. But because a babies’ brain and head are rather big, they would not fit through the birth canal any later. Therefore, newborn babies will continue to develop their brains and bodies and will need extra support from their caregivers during this time.
When a baby is born, its world changes rather drastically. While it was in her mother’s womb it experienced soft red light, muted sounds, the wave like sound of her mother’s blood and constant gentle movement. But once a baby is born, it will experience bright light, loud sounds and perhaps a motionless place where she is supposed to sleep.
How can babywearing help the transitioning from Womb to Earthside for the baby?
Babywearing helps to recreate a “womb like” environment for your baby. When your baby is in a carrier, he will be close to you. It will be warm, he will be able to hear your heartbeat, smell you, and experience a constant gentle movement from your body.
While babywearing is great to get out and about with your child, it is even better for helping your newborn child to adjust to the world around it! Your baby will feel protected and secure when they are close to you which supports your babies’ development during the fourth trimester.
The benefits for parents
Not only babies benefit from being carried during the first few months of their lives. You as their parent will also hugely benefit. Because, when you are carrying your baby and holding it close, a magical hormone called oxytocin will be released. This hormone helps you to relax, feel less stressed and bond with your child. It is not only your baby who needs to adjust to a new world, you will also need to adjust to a whole new world of being a parent!
Elisabeth Schmidt is a mum to a beautiful four-year-old daughter who she’s been wearing in a carrier since she was born. She started volunteering for Babywearing Nelson in April 2017 and shortly after took over managing the Babywearing Nelson library. She is passionate about educating parents and caregivers about safe and comfortable babywearing. She offers personal support sessions in the comfort of your own home as well as small workshops. She has all carriers from the Babywearing Nelson library available for clients to try and hire.
Babywearing Nelson is a group of volunteers who organizes FREE meetings once a month, where everyone can come. They have a huge range of carriers available to try and hire for a small fee.
You can contact her through Babywearing Nelson on Facebook: https://facebook.com/babywearingnelson/
Or through her Website: www.babywearing.nz