If you are a busy parent who has to take a small baby everywhere with them, particularly has to travel by public transport, or go shopping or marketing with them, then a baby carrier or baby sling is a must!
Also if going on a holiday, a carrier or a sling for baby is invaluable both while traveling as well as for when you plan to do any sightseeing.
Even working around the house, a baby can be carried around rather than left to be by itself, making it a bonding experience.
A carrier or sling will help carry the little one leaving your hands free and it is also far less tiring having the weight of the baby distributed evenly all over the shoulders and torso than actually having to carry a baby everywhere.
Baby slings have been around literally since millennia when a variety of indigenous people have tried using a number of different things such as baskets, animal skins, calabashes, and wooden carrying structures or items of clothing such as blankets, sashes etc to carry their babies along with themselves wherever they go.
There is a range of design styles available to ensure you get the best baby carrier for new baby as well as meeting your own requirements too.
Modern baby carriers or slings are contemporary versions of the same and usually are available in four basic styles; i.e. Baby Wraps, Baby Slings (includes pouch slings and ring slings), Mei Tai or soft pack baby carriers, the basic features of each are:
- A baby wrap is useful to carry baby in a number of different positions and is very versatile since it adapts to a growing baby’s size and weight. It keeps the baby snug and close to the parent. However, these can take some getting used to, and can get a hot and sweaty in summer.
- A ring sling is easy to get on and off and can be useful to nurse baby as well. Baby can be held facing in or out or hitched on the hip. A pouch as well, is easy to settle the baby on the hip. However, with these designs, sizing is generally an issue and they don’t adjust as well when the baby grows.
- Mei Tai baby carriers are more structured and have a sewn carrier and padded shoulder straps. This one usually offers more support and leaves some more room for a baby to move since the baby is not packed as close to the parent’s body. It is also more comfortable in summer. Due to the dual straps, the baby’s weight is evenly distributed. What is often referred to as a soft pack baby carrier is a Mei Tai with some extra padding and some buckles for adjustment. These are best for long periods of baby carrying, particularly large or heavy babies.