baby bjorn-type slings and hip development - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 11 Old 12-29-2003, 12:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi:

My son loves his Baby Bjorn-like sling (cheaper Infantino version ).. .but my husband feels that it's going to somehow affect his hip development based on its design. Any ideas on this?

Mom to DS(8), DS(6), DD(4), and DS(1).  "Kids do as well as they can."

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#2 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 05:21 AM
 
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Interesting. I heard stuff like this in Germany, but about babies' backs and carriers. In any case, my Didymos instructions say that the sling is good for their hip development. Don't know if any of this is based on fact, but it would seem to me that there would be a rash of hip problems if these carriers were bad, and I at least haven't seen that.

Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#3 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 10:34 AM
 
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I had heard about the hip problems too. I will look and see if I can find the website I was looking at that talked about it.
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#4 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 10:38 AM
 
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I don't know about a web site, but my chiropractor did tell us not to use a Bjorn-like carrier or the jumpers because it sort of hangs them by their crotch. Maybe a trekker could be an alternative? They're pricey but you can use them for front-facing too. Also I made an asian style carrier and use it front facing sometimes.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news for the carrier!
Peace.
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#5 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 10:57 AM
 
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The one article we (MDC moms the last time we discussed this) found was written by a chiro with no particularly specialized qualification in infant physical development or any other equivalant issue...and I felt it was very speculative. The front pack snugli has been popular since the 70's, even making the cover of the wall street journal - so I felt if chiros were going to see an explosion of hip issues they'd be apparant by now. She did a comparison with an eskimo tribe of some sort...theorizing an evironmental cause without knowing anything about their carrriers or lifestyle. So it was a weak article, based on speculation and not really any more definitive than what we as moms talk about on our own. I'd love to see something more well-researched - and I don't mean some super huge scientific study, either.

All in all, using one type of carrier or piece of equipment exclusively in my own opinion is probably not healthy...using a range of equipment and positions (even in a sling) is probably the safest since we don't have much helpful guidance out there.

edited to add, it seems like some of the criticism of front carriers is merely aimed at them because they are popular, used by upper middle class mainstream people, and don't look as natural/alternative as a sling. Cradle boards and carry baskets are found in many cultures too, but we're not promoting them as much. Anything that gets people carrying their babies close is a plus I think...whether sling, front back, or backpack. I am by far more worried about the amount of time children spend in car seats...which, if front packs are a concern, may well be far more serious for spinal development.
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#6 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 11:05 AM
 
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#7 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 12:11 PM
 
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Here's the bit from Didymos - not scientific either!
http://www.didymos.de/english/index_e.htm

Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#8 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 02:17 PM
 
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Here is a page on hip dysplasia (a condition where the hip bone is easily dislocatable from the socket). According to that page:

Quote:
It is difficult to prevent something the cause of which is still quite elusive. However, it is well known that in cultures that practice infant swaddling and using cradle boards to carry their babies, the incidence of hip dysplasia is very high. On the other hand, cultures that carry their babies astride the mother’s backs have a low incidence of hip dysplasia. Hence it appears logical to discourage putting the baby’s legs in the extended position, and encourage keeping the baby’s hips spread apart. This latter position places the head of the femur (the ball) against the acetabulum (the socket), and encourages deepening of the socket.
My dd was born with hip dysplasia, and the orthopedist who treated her told us basically the same thing.
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#9 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 06:15 PM
 
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so for displaysia, a front pack is good? or at least fairly, since it's a hips apart positions...this is the same principle that has some orthopedist advocate double or triple cloth diapering for kids with displaysia. Huh. Interesting.
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#10 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 10:36 PM
 
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A front pack (like a Baby Bjorn) doesn't really keep the hips that far apart. I think using a sling with the baby in the hip straddle or forward-facing legs-crossed positions would be better for preventing hip dysplasia.
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#11 of 11 Old 12-30-2003, 10:52 PM
 
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how about european physio experts that say flat is heathiest for babies (therefore the continuing market in Europe for prams/carriages and carrycots for infants, rather than strollers or car seat attachments.) Just another item muddying the water...
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