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Sling Safely

March 23, 2010

You knew this post was coming, right?  If you’ve been reading this blog for any time at all, you probably know that I’m rather passionate about baby-wearing.  We had some difficulties during the first few months of Baby O’s life including a surgical birth as well as breastfeeding difficulties.  Baby-wearing was (is) immensely helpful to our family.  Keeping Baby O close was (is) not only wonderful for his growth and development, it also helped nurture and heal his mama.

click for larger image

Our family has no fewer than seven (7!) baby-wearing apparatuses.  If you are not familiar with baby-wearing, this might seem like a lot.  If you are familiar with baby-wearing perhaps you already know that while having one or two is totally functional, having seven is bliss!  What I’m saying is, we actively use all seven baby-wearing devices.  As Baby O and his needs have changed, so have our ways of wearing.

I think it’s important to say here that we have never been cradle carriers.  Baby O has always preferred to be upright, “tummy to tummy”.

Needless to say, when I heard the CPSC was going to issue a warning about sling carriers, I was concerned.  After the statement was released, B and I both read it and agreed that it is likely a good thing.  The statement is not nearly as one sided as I feared it might be and contains some points that inexperienced wearers really do need to be aware of:

  • keep baby’s chin off chest at all times
  • consistently check baby’s breathing
  • keep baby’s face visible and clear of all clothing or sling fabric
  • be especially careful with low birth weight and premature babies

Some things I* would add to that would be:

  • use common sense
  • use carriers made of breathable, natural materials
  • always review any safety material included with your carrier
  • always check your carriers for any damage before each use
  • never use padded bag-style slings (you know the one)
  • if any carrier doesn’t feel safe or “right” for any reason, don’t use it
  • always practice using any baby carrier at home in a safe environment preferably with a “spotter”
  • we also avoid carrying baby in an outward front facing position for various reasons

So, let’s talk baby-wearing!  What is your favorite way to carry?

Helpful Links:

  • Find the statement issued March 12, 2010 by the CPSC here.
  • Watch a public service announcement issued by the CPSC here. (Please don’t let it frighten you…  I don’t think that is their intention.)
  • Find an article on about the warning here.
  • Find a positive article about sling use here.  (I really enjoyed this.)
  • My favorite place for baby-wearing info is

*Please Note: All opinions and ideas expressed on this site are just that, personal opinions and ideas.  I can only vouch for the experience and opinions of my own family.  Please use your own best judgment and seek the advice of a medical professional (or otherwise appropriate professional) when deciding which products and/or methods are best for your family.  I am not and do not pretend to be an expert in anything other than my own experience.  Thank you.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. blb1alfred permalink
    March 25, 2010 11:01 am

    This post is brilliant, sweetie! Thank you!


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