Is the Bjorn worth getting? My answer NO. (If you really want a front carrier, I'd go with the BABY TREKKER. Yes, it has thick, comfy, octopus arms, but it's comfy! And it can be worn front or back, about the same amount of money as the Bjorn. IMO it's a superior carrier. Wish I had known about it before I bought the BJorn.)
If you want, buy a gently used Bjorn (go to a children's consignment shop, check yard sales, for sale ads...) to try it out.
I did not want to use it for the first 3 months because of the spine concerns. I only was able to use it until month 5 or 6 because I had such a heavy, little butterball baby!
It killed my back. There is very minimal padding on the straps. (I know women with heavy babies
who use the Bjorn until 9 months or so. Wow. Ouch. Not me, Forget it.)
Oh yeah, and since I had a son, I hated
how his testicles were smooshed.
So I limited myself to 1 hour a day. All for $90 + shipping. It was a waste for me.
SLING - my son was "high needs" which meant he needed to be held in arms 24/7 from birth. I couldn't figure out my Over the Shoulder Baby Holder
(I was never given the awesome video when I bought it.
I went to my local La Leche League
meeting when my son was 5 months old - simply BEGGING for someone to show me how to use my OTSBH.
Once I put him in the front carry (aka Kangaroo carry) I couldn't believe how easy it was! Turned out I was using it all wrong (hence my son's reaction - anger because I buried him too deep in the sling.)
My son ended up LOVIN' the sling and so did I. Up to that point I was cursing the money I spent on it.
GET SLING HELP... it will make a world of difference. I ended up using a
Maya Wrap and luckily, my experienced LLL friends helped me out with that when I ran into trouble.
I became a sling expert and used the sling exclusively (no stroller) until my son was 20 months old
If you want to buy a sling, find a local distributor with experience using it (or go to LLL meetings) to try them out and get hands-on help.
Also, get the video
. When I give slings as gifts I ALWAYS give the video. It helps to have someone show you how (I didn't have that with my baby). My friend's DH was wearing his son in the OTSBH when he was a week home from the hospital.