We've seen throughout this blog that humans have been carrying babies in slings throughout history.
And that's because, simply, our babies expect to be carried, and we are made to carry them. Carrying our babies is normal.
- 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.
- It can greatly reduce crying and fussiness, and also helps your tired baby fall asleep.
So you know why carrying your baby in a baby carrier or sling is best.
But what are the best types of baby slings for newborns? Well here we're going to find out!
There are many wonderful options for newborns including ring slings, stretchy wraps, half buckle carriers and woven wraps, and many will last until your baby is older too.
A stretchy wrap can be tied at the start of the day and left on, with no need to readjust. This can be very reassuring in the early days, particularly as you’re adjusting to being a new parent. You know where the sling is, at all times, and it’s for baby and you - comfy, close and connected. There are lots of different types, some that comprise a length of fabric, and others that are a little more substantial such as the Close Caboo.
Our top stretchy wrap for newborns - the Coracor Baby Wrap.
A woven wrap sling can work for all sizes and ages, from one-week old until your child grows out of being carried. You can adjust the sling to carry your baby in different ways as they grow and develop. Once you wrap it around, the sling holds your baby safely and securely in a way that promotes their development, is respectful to the baby's physiology and is healthy for their hips. Woven wraps can be tied for front, back and hip carries. If you've loved using a stretchy wrap for your baby, then a woven wrap will allow you to continue wrapping with a larger, heavier baby, toddler and child.
Woven baby wraps are a beautiful way to carry your little one. There is a sort of ritual to wrapping a baby; the cloth, the movements, the finish. It can seem daunting - the long length of fabric, without structure, and yes, there is a learning curve with it, for sure. However, the lack of structure is exactly what makes a woven wrap so versatile. It can be used with even the smallest babies all the way to preschoolers. The very same wrap. Which also means a woven wrap can be the most economical, cost-effective sling to use.
Our top woven wrap for newborns - Didymos Woven Wraps.
Half Buckle Carriers
Halfway between a full buckle carrier and a meh dai carrier, a half buckle carrier offers the ease of a clip buckle at the waist, with the adjustability of long shoulder straps for a truly snug fit, without the reaching for back or side clips. Front, hip and back carrying, most are suitable from newborn.
They are a wonderful option if you'd like a little more structure for ease of use, but want something mouldable, soft and wrap-like. There are lots of variations between the brands. Some have wrap-strap shoulders, some have padded shoulder straps and waist straps.
Our top half buckle for newborns - the Manduca Twist.
Ring slings are awesome; we absolutely love them! A ring sling comprises a long piece of woven wrap fabric with 2 aluminium rings sewn into one end. The length usually ranges from 1.7m to 2m. The tail (end of the woven wrap) is usually asymmetric.
A ring sling is a wonderful option for the fourth trimester, newborn days and beyond. A single layer carry, without fuss, they are light, easy to care for and can be used way beyond the fourth trimester.
Our top ring sling for newborns - Little Frog Ring Slings.
A baby sling or carrier is an absolutely necessary element in your parenting 'toolkit'. At the end of the day, it enables you to meet your baby's needs (all of them - emotional, psychological, physiological) whilst still having your hands free to do what you need to do to get on with the day!