Baby wearing is a wonderful way to bond with your baby and to free up your hands when you have work to do, but do you know what else it’s great for? Nursing! Not only are we going to share some of our favorite carriers with you, but we’re also going to discuss how to use your carrier when you need to feed your little one.
Before we get into which carriers are best for nursing, let’s talk for a moment about the different types of carriers that are available.
While you can nurse in any of the above types of carriers, some are easier to learn and work with than others. Using a ring sling allows you to nurse your newborn in a cradle carry or lying down position, while a soft structured carrier allows upright feeding for your infant or toddler. Depending on the age and size of your baby, you should choose a carrier that will ensure your comfort as well as baby’s.
Here are some of our favorite carriers:
According to Bonnie Stafford, a Master Babywearing Educator through Babywearing International, regardless of the carrier type, “the general process is to: 1. Loosen up the carrier to lower baby towards breast level, 2. Latch baby on, 3. Tighten the carrier back up, if needed.”
Ms. Stafford also noted that the most important part of nursing is being aware of when the baby is finished in order to ensure there is no slumping. “[During breastfeeding] with the carrier being looser, the mother needs to monitor baby while they are feeding. As soon as baby is finished actively nursing, the wearer needs to immediately re-position the baby back up to the high position — aka: close enough to kiss position, and then re-tighten the carrier.”
While breastfeeding in a carrier is a great experience, it is important to remember to establish the relationship of breastfeeding separately from baby wearing. It is important for the baby to learn how to latch correctly. In this way, when you start wearing and feeding simultaneously, the process will not be stressful for you or baby!
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