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Babywearing After a Caesarean Birth (C-Section)

Beth Beaney - the Executive Babywearing Consultant at Love To Be Natural

 

by , Executive Babywearing Consultant at LTBN

Babywearing After a Caesarean Birth (C-Section)

 

If you're a mum who has given birth via caesarean section, you may be wondering if babywearing is an option for you. The good news is that, yes, babywearing is definitely possible after a caesarean birth! In fact, it can be a great way to help with healing and bonding with your new little one. Keep reading for tips on how to get started.

 

After a traumatic cesarean birth, one of my best friends, Melanie, found great comfort in babywearing. It allowed her to snuggle with her newborn baby, Aoife, while still recovering from surgery. She quickly grew to love the closeness and convenience of carrying Aoife.

She was grateful that her husband could also carry their child when she needed a break. He would take Aoife for walks around the park or go shopping with her snuggled against his chest. They soon discovered that she seemed to fall asleep more easily when being carried.

As Melanie healed, both physically and emotionally, she cherished the special moments spent bonding with her baby through babywearing.

So the answer to 'Can You Carry Your Baby In a Sling After Having a C-Section?' is a resounding 'Yes!', but of course how quickly you can do it depends on a few things:

  • you,
  • how you are feeling,
  • if there were any complications,
  • and how your wound feels.

 

There’s no ‘right’ time when you can start carrying after having had a c-section.

 

You may not feel up to it for a while - it could be days, weeks - there’s no ‘right’ answer, and that’s absolutely fine, of course; you’re in recovery after all.

When you feel ready, that’s when to start. I know you have the responsibility of looking after a newborn, but remember to be gentle on yourself and always listen to your body.

Carrying with a sling may be easier for you too overall, especially if you have other children to care for.

Even after a c-section, you will still have to twist, move and lift baby. But having baby in a sling can help by keeping baby close to you. This way baby can be held without much effort from you. You can feed baby easier with the support of the sling, you have your hands free, and it's where your baby will be happiest.

Babywearing after a c-section in a stretchy wrap
Being close to you is where your baby will be happiest.

 

What's The Best Sling to Use After a C-Section?

This is a great question, and an important one, as there are so many different types of baby carriers and slings out there that it is easy to get confused.

Technically, you can use whichever sling or carrier you find comfiest. We always recommend taking a look at stretchy wrapswoven wraps and ring slings - these are really the best options for a postpartum body.

Here is a guide to the best baby carriers and slings to use after a c-section.

Stretchy Wraps

 

Babywearing with a stretchy wrap

 

stretchy wrap is the perfect baby sling for your newborn and offers a gentle transition from womb to world. Supportive and lightweight, they allow you to carry your baby safely and comfortably.

 

Stretchy wraps work really well after having a c-section as baby can be carried as high as you need (away from the soft tissue) and can actually be carried slightly off-centre, to take pressure off your lower body.

 

They facilitate skin-to-skin, are completely soft, and thus very respectful of your newborn’s physiology. Stretchy wraps are a long piece of soft fabric which is wrapped around you before welcoming baby in. The advantage is that you can tie it in the morning and keep it on all day if needed - you can also have it tied before you go out. Perfect for those precious first weeks and months.

Stretchy wraps work really well after having a c-section as baby can be carried as high as you need (away from the soft tissue) and can actually be carried slightly off-centre, to take pressure off your lower body.

Babywearing in a stretchy wrap
With a stretchy wrap you can keep baby tucked up high. They also facilitate skin-to-skin & allow for off-centre carrying.

 

Ring Slings

ring sling is also ideal for babywearing after a c-section. A ring sling is one long piece of fabric with two rings sewn into one end worn over one shoulder, with your newborn seated on your front or off centre.

For your newborn the single-layer carry is light, with little fuss, supporting them tucked up high and close.

Ring slings are great for after having had a c-section

 

Ring slings are excellent for babywearing after having a c-section. For you, the ring sling is lightweight, and without bulk. More importantly, there’s no waistband or bulky fabric sitting around the hips, waist or soft tissue.

 

Ring Slings are excellent for babywearing after having a c-section. For you, the ring sling is lightweight, and without bulk. More importantly, there’s no waistband or bulky fabric sitting around the hips, waist or soft tissue.

 

You can wear the ring sling on either shoulder and carry baby very high on your torso, so there’s as little pressure as possible on your lower body. Your newborn can be seated off-centre too, making it a great, comfortable option for you.

In a ring sling baby can be seated high & off-centre
In a ring sling baby can be seated high & off-centre.

 

Woven Wraps

Woven wraps are the most versatile carrying option - depending on the length of the wrap, they can be used for many different carrying positions.

Babywearing with a woven wrap

 

Not only are wraps versatile, they can be used with even the smallest of newborns right through to preschool. In this way they are the most economical option too.

Woven wraps are a great option to use after having had a c-section - they're soft, supportive and can be tied to suit you and your newborn.

You can use a single-layer carry which is light and supportive. There’s no padding, and as they are woven, they are highly breathable. Your newborn can be carried quite high on your torso too.

Babywearing after a c-section in a woven wrap
Woven wraps are versatile & can be tied to suit you.

 

Attachment & Bonding After a C-Section

Welcoming a new baby to the world is a joyous time, but it isn't without its challenges. Carrying your baby in a baby carrier or sling facilitates deep bonding; building a strong, mutual attachment whilst being hands free - think hot cuppa, going to the loo, relaxing together.

Your baby is new to the world, and your baby needs to be carried. Here's why:

  • carrying your baby helps develop a secure mutual attachment;
  • it allows both parents, or indeed any caregiver, to develop a deep bond with baby;
  • it increases parental sensitivity to a baby's needs - you learn to interpret their noises and expressions so much quicker;
  • it simulates the sensations of pressure, motion, warmth and security of the womb;
  • carrying your baby in a sling reduces their level of stress, and
  • it can greatly reduce crying and fussiness, and also helps your tired baby fall asleep.

In a sense then, a baby carrier or sling for your baby is absolutely invaluable.

Adjusting as a family, adapting to the changes, particularly post-section, can be challenging.

After a c-section birth, you will still carry your baby in arms.  A sling allows you to be hands-free at the same time.
After a c-section birth, you will still carry your baby in arms. A sling allows you to be hands-free at the same time.

 

A baby carrier can make this transition simpler - babies are calmed when they're next to you, they hear your heartbeat, they smell you and feel you. And it's the same for you - you feel them, hear them, smell them. It all makes sense. Your body will understand by producing oxytocin which has positive effects on baby and you (on all 3 aspects - your mental health, and your emotional and physical well-being). it’s a wonderfully human action.

After having a c-section, you still carry your baby every day - in arms, on your chest, on your shoulder. It’s where your baby is most comfortable. It’s where you love to hold them, where you know they are happiest and safest.

Using a sling to carry your baby is an extension of carrying your baby in arms.

 

A sling allows you to carry your baby, to continue the loving touch your infant needs, whilst having your hands free, including if you've had a c-section.

 

Support For You

If you need any support carrying after a section please get in touch! We can support you in-person or online.


I hope you found this article helpful. Please get in touch or email me - beth@lovetobenatural.co.uk - if you'd like any further info or just a chat about babywearing post-section, babywearing in general, or advice on any other products at all.

 

Beth Beaney - the Executive Babywearing Consultant at Love To Be Natural

Beth Beaney is the Founder of and Executive Babywearing Consultant at LTBN. She's been a qualified babywearing consultant for 12 years, and has helped hundreds of families of all needs carry their babies safely and comfortably. Find her on Twitter @lovetobenatural_LTBN

 

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