Most new mothers complain about back pain, which can be attributed to constantly cradling, rocking, and carrying an infant – but are there ways to care for your child with fewer aches and pains? Though there’s nothing you can do to make the car seat lighter, one way to reduce back pain during your child’s early months is by finding an appropriate babywearing wrap. More comfortable than most modern carriers, babywearing slings and wraps have become more popular in the last few years due to the attachment parenting movement.
Before you get started, there are a few things you should know about babywearing and back pain that will help you adjust to the practice. With these 4 tips, your back will be feeling better in no time.
One common mistake new parents make when considering babywearing is waiting to give it a try. Waiting until your child is bigger and you’re already experiencing significant back pain is a recipe for disaster, since your child will weigh more. A newborn will likely weigh somewhere between six and eight pounds, but if you wait a few months, you’ll quickly be carrying fifteen or twenty pounds. Start babywearing early so that your back has time to get stronger as they grow.
Support Is Key
Any time you’re carrying something – whether it’s a heavy box or a human baby – you need to support your back. This is what makes babywearing so good for back pain: most modern carriers with their straps and clips place the majority of your child’s weight onto your shoulders, which can cause poor posture and exacerbate pain. With a babywearing wrap, however, because when the wrap is pulled tight, it actually works like a back brace.
During infancy, wearing your child on your front will be perfectly comfortable and is more convenient for soothing and feeding them, but as your little one grows, consider switching where you carry them. Moving your child to your back or your hip within the wrap is often better for your back and more convenient, making it easier for you to run errands or do other household chores. Sitting on your back or your side also gives older children a better view of the world.
It may feel impossible to catch a break as a new mom, but don’t forget to give your back some rest and care. Go for a massage or give dad the baby wrap for a few hours – one of the great thing about wraps is that they can be adjusted to fit any size body. Show dad how to put the wrap on and let him provide the comfort of closeness. This will also help you child associate both parents with being soothed, making it easier to share comforting duties are your child grows.
Babywearing is great for your back compared to many other ways of hauling your little one around, whether simply in your arms or in their heavy car seat carrier. Give your back a break and your baby the safety they seek through babywearing, wrapping them close for greatest comfort.