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The Rap on Wraps

February 12, 2015
By Stacey Sacco - Contributing Writer , OVParent

Baby wraps are more popular than ever. With benefits such as reducing colic, acid reflux and sleeplessness, and promoting breastfeeding and bonding, babywearing is gaining mainstream popularity. To meet the demand, new products have flooded the market in recent years, making it difficult for the beginner to determine what the best carrier would be to suit her needs.

The most important factors are to provide a safe environment for baby. The T.I.C.K.S. acronym will remind caregivers of babywearing safety. Baby should always be Tight, In view, Close enough to kiss, chin Kept off his chest and have a Supported back.

These are readily available ergonomic options for babywearing:

Article Photos

Iris, 3 months, and Stacey

Stretchy Wraps - The most popular stretchy wrap is the Moby. This is a long piece of jersey material that wraps around the parent with the baby placed against the chest. While caregivers will need to learn how to tie the wrap, this is perfect for infants. There is nothing scratchy or abrasive, and it is easy to support the entire body. However, it becomes increasingly uncomfortable as the baby gains weight.

Soft Structured Carriers - These carriers have buckles and look like "baby backpacks." They are extremely easy to use and adjust. They can be used both on the front and the back. These can get pricy and are limited in the amount of adjustments that can be made for comfort.

Mei Tai - These look similar to soft structured carriers, but instead of buckles have long straps to tie around the body. These are very economical options.

Ring Slings - This is a piece of fabric with two metal rings attached. Because this goes over just one shoulder, it is more comfortable with small babies than toddlers.

Woven Wraps - This is a huge and slightly intimidating category. Although they are just long pieces of material, they come in a variety of sizes, fabrics and patterns. There is a large learning curve as well because there are so many ways to tie this kind of wrap. However, with the diversity of woven wraps, there really is something for everyone.

- Stacey Sacco of Martins Ferry is the founder of the Ohio Valley Babywearing group on Facebook.



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