how long is it safe to wear your baby at one time? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 08-09-2010, 11:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi, I was just wondering if anyone knew how long it is safe to wear your baby for at one time, and also if anyone has any recommendations for the best type of carrier to use for long periods of carrying. My DD is 3 1/2 months old. I am concerned about spinal cord compression because I will need to be carrying her for multiple hours at a time (if that is indeed safe to do) and want to make sure that I get the best type of carrier to support her.

I currently have a mei tai (homemade by my aunt) and a maya ring sling. Both are fine, but is there another carrier out there that is better?

Thanks for any advice.
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#2 of 7 Old 08-09-2010, 11:18 AM
 
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If you wear your baby correctly(with them in a seated position, knees at or above their butt level, never "hanging" by their crotch) there is no "too long." My answer just based on your subject line was going to be, "until they need their diaper changed," but afterwards you could put them right back in.

Mei tais are great, as are the newer Maya wraps. I also really like woven wraps, like Didymos, especially for wearing for long periods of time.
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#3 of 7 Old 08-09-2010, 02:34 PM
 
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The PP's post about proper carrying position is right on. Basically, you want the carrier to hold your baby in the same position (or similar!) that your arms would hold the baby. When DS was a newborn, we kept him cuddled up frog-legged in the sling/wrap/mei tai. It kept his spine, bum, legs, and neck well supported and comfortable.

I wore my baby ALL day. That was the only way I could get anything done, since he'd wake up the minute I put him down! I liked our Mei Tai and Maya, but the most comfy option for really long-term wearing, IMO, was our wrap. We had a Moby wrap, which is easy to learn how to use, and great for young babies. But, next time around I'll get a woven wrap instead. They work the same way, but are less stretchy than the Moby. By the time DS was 7 months old or so, the Moby was too stretchy to support him as comfortably. (But, I guess almost 7 months of daily use made the Moby worth the $40 it cost!) A woven wrap takes a bit more practice to get the tightness just right, but it can be used all the way through toddlerhood!

Is there an API group or natural parenting group anywhere near you? Maybe you could find someone to show you some great wrap options in person!

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#4 of 7 Old 08-09-2010, 02:44 PM
 
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Google pictures of traditional cultures engaging in baby-wearing, and try to imitate that. Many other cultures do almost-constant BWing for up to the 1st year with no ill effects.

Both of my boys were carried in their sling for almost every waking (and sleeping!) moment until 9mos old when they magically learned to walk (I had been "warned" that they might never learn! LOL). They had no spinal issues whatsoever.

Bring back the old MDC
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#5 of 7 Old 08-09-2010, 04:18 PM
 
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Your baby will let you know if they are uncomfortable. I'd say wear them as long as you're both happy

Married to David since 2/16/08. Baby wearing, breastfeeding, bed sharing, delayed vaxing, cloth diapering, SAHM to Bella, my punctual little girl, born on her due date, 9/3/09
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#6 of 7 Old 08-10-2010, 11:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the feedback. I don't drive so any errands or outings I do are on foot, which usually means they take 3 hours or so to do. I hate having to drag a stroller around the city especially in stores and grocery shopping. Its good to know that I can wear her for that long with no ill effects. Any other suggestions for your favorite wraps for longs wears with a 13+ pound baby??
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#7 of 7 Old 08-10-2010, 02:31 PM
 
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I exclusively use wrap-style carriers, and I carry my baby for sometimes hours at a time running errands or while she's sleeping (usually while running errands : ). I carry her tummy to tummy with her head right under my chin. This is the most comfortable way for both of us. When she gets a bit older, I'll carry her on my back more. On my baby, I like to have the child's head up near my shoulder.

As for my favorites, I like Didymos and Vatanai wraps.

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