More Babywearing

You may end up getting tired of my posts on babywearing, but you guys I am so excited to share this with you all. There are so many products out there designed to hold your baby while you get things done but I love the fact that babywearing is timeless and completely cross-cultural. We love to think we have it all together and have come so far from the past or more simple cultures but in that area we can learn from them.

If you read my post on babywearing you already know some, definitely not all, of the benefits. There are many great things about it. But there are so many different types of carriers, how can you know which one to choose? Well, some people choose to have a couple for different activities. As far as types of baby carriers, there is quite the gamut. Long cloth types such as slings seem to have been the norm way back when but then along came a more molded type of soft front carrier. In theory this one should have been easier to use but for me I always had issues with what to do with my newborn until his or her little legs were able to spread wide enough to straddle the leg holes. Next I tried the stretchy wraps that you wrap around yourself while feeling like a Jedi from Star Wars. I loved it once I got it on and found that it was useful for all ages and stages but I never quite mastered the wrapping of it.

As I was searching the “Neverland” of Pinterest on this issue, I discovered that some of the top brands such as the Maya wrap and Moby are now making a sling type carrier. I guess the old things die hard. Check out these beautiful slings…

If you are unsure about which type to buy since they are a bit pricey (but worth every penny), ask friends to try out theirs or see if your area has a babywearing library. Here in the Portland Metro area check out….


A good ‘ole Pinterest search will bring up lots of information on babywearing, including tutorials on how to use them.

Leave me a comment and tell me your babywearing experience and what carrier you used and prefer!

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Baby Wearing

            After having 12 babies over the span of 28 years of marriage, one would think the idea of babywearing would be old hat to me. But I can honestly say that it was something I only dabbled in. However, through my Postpartum Doula training with Birth Arts International, I have come to learn amazing things about babywearing; things I wish I could go back and do over with my own children.

            Other cultures wear their babies while doing daily tasks, whereas here in the U.S. we wheel them where we want to go and often park them there, be it in a stroller or infant seat. But Infant Development Specialists, who study cultural practices of babycare around the world, found that babies who are carried in a variety of sling and front carriers are more content than babies kept in cribs, strollers, car seats and infant seats.

            Dr. William Sears and his wife, Martha, were encouraged to study the beneficial effects of babywearing in 1985. In all their years of studying and observing babywearing and different styles of baby carriers, they came to the conclusion that what mothers in other cultures use- a sling type carrier- works the best.

            But what are some of the benefits to babywearing? With practice, mom will be able to breastfeed while baby is in the sling. It helps organize problem suckers. Tense babies and babies who arch their backs while breastfeeding often breastfeed much better in the sling as it helps them to relax.

            Babywearing also helps mom to care for older children. Mom has two hands free to play or read with them and that makes for a more relaxed mom.

            Babywearing has medical benefits too. Dr. Nils Bergman, a South African pediatrician, uses the power of skin to skin to improve the survival of preemies in Zimbabwe from 10% to 50% by using skin to skin or Kangaroo Care. He says that a mother’s body is a newborn’s habitat and that removing a baby from the natural habitat triggers instincts that can be counter productive to breastfeeding. When a newborn is in the right habitat (touching his mother), his brain responds by triggering the program for growth, stress levels decrease, his gut begins to process food, and his heart rate and breathing normalize.

            “Failure to thrive” babies benefit from babywearing. Motion has a calming effect on infants. Energy needed for growth is not wasted in crying and close proximity to the breast promotes frequent feedings.

            Babywearing reduces crying and colic and enhances learning. It enhances parent-infant bonding and allows fathers to play a vital role in infant care, thereby giving mom a chance to rest. Postpartum depression is less common in babywearing moms, possibly from frequent hormonal stimulation, which has been shown to have a tranquilizing effect on mother.

            Along with all of these benefits, babywearing makes life easier for parents and does good things for baby too.

Article written by Kelly Menne, mom to many, and Postpartum Doula at The Nurtured Mother.

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If Everyone Could Have One

There is a great article in the NY Times about the benefits of having a Postpartum Doula. Moms (and dads too) need help after a new baby arrives and family is not always around to be the support system that they need. Even before reading this article, I thought of my role as a Postpartum Doula as “Mary Poppins”; popping in to lend a hand when it is needed, pulling from my bag of skills and experiences. As one friend of mine said, “You can never have too much help”. Take a few minutes to read it, especially if you just don’t know how a Postpartum Doula helps in real life.

Unfortunately I couldn’t get the link to cooperate so please copy and paste the link below.
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No Need to Re-invent the wheel

There are some great bloggers out there. I enjoy reading all the different perspectives. So why re-invent the wheel…here is a great post on some things to expect postpartum. Please keep in mind that not everyone will have all of these issues and you may very well fly through your postpartum period with very little issues. But I think it is great to read what others went through so you will know you are not alone if you experience these things.

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A Fabulous blog post about your babymoon

The following is a fabulous post on what you can do to rest, heal and bond with your baby during your postpartum time. I found her suggestions to be in line with my desire for the new moms that I doula for. Give it a good read and see what suggestions you can implement and prepare for before baby joins your family.

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Needs of a New Mother

Rest so you can heal

Gentle education and reassurance as you gain confidence in your mothering skills

Nourishing food and drink for yourself

A relinquishing of practical chores to someone else so you can withdraw into yourself and your baby

Knowledge about what is going on with your body and spirit

Some realistic images and guideposts about the range of feelings other women have experienced postpartum

A place to debrief and talk about the birth itself and your emotions

And most especially some mothering for yourself so you can feel protected, honored and replenished

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Why Hire a Postpartum Doula?

  • Education on infant care skills
  • Encourages family bonding
  • Breastfeeding and bottle-feeding support
  • Non-judgmental listening
  • Processing of the birth and birth story
  • Educational support
  • Doula spends time with baby so family can rest
  • Light housekeeping
  • Laundry
  • Run Errands
  • Assist in nursery organization and set-up
  • Assist with sibling care
  • Help with adjustment issues
  • Prepare nutritious meals and snacks
  • Assist mother in being able to get appropriate rest and showers
  • Supportive person in the environment to help with the needs of the mother
  • Benefits dad by giving him help with the chores and he can have less anxiety about going back to work

The Nurtured Mother Postpartum Doula  971-237-0841

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Postpartum Doulas

Who are Postpartum Doulas and what in the world do they do? Why would I want one?

Well Postpartum Doulas are women who have a heart and passion for mothers. Who want to be there to nurture the mother as she starts this new journey. A Postpartum Doula isn’t just for first time mothers. We are here for all mothers, and fathers too. Not only do we want to be there to allow moms to rest and heal, we want to be there to help the family to adjust to this new little life in the family.

Some things Postpartum Doulas do are, but are not limited to: caring for baby while mom rests or takes a refreshing shower, sibling care to allow mom and baby bond, light housekeeping, meal prep, making nutritious snacks, breastfeeding and baby care education, shopping, errands, pampering mom, laundry, a listening ear, share resources and organizing the nursery. These are just some of the things. A Postpartum Doula can talk with you before your birth to see what would benefit you the most once you come home from the hospital.

If you have further questions, I would love to chat with you to see how I can help you. Feel free to leave a comment or use the Contact page.

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