Benefits to Baby

Using a sling can be of great benefit to your baby.. but remember, it is the relationship; closeness and touch, as well as the position adopted in a good sling that matters the most, not the type of sling or the fabric you use!

•    It promotes and encourages the establishment of a successful breastfeeding relationship. Mothers who carry their children in soft slings are more likely to breastfeed beyond the early weeks.

•    It helps to regulate temperature, heart and respiratory rates, and emotional and physical growth. This can be especially useful for premature babies (the term “kangaroo care” and “fourth trimester” come from this concept) or children who are unwell. You can read more about the huge advantages of such skin-to-skin care in those early days here.
•    Regular close skin contact is believed to help babies regulate their circadian rhythms better and distinguish the difference between night and day sleep.
•    It reduces crying, both frequency and duration, and can improve sleep. It is safe for your baby to sleep in the sling, if the airway is well protected. Less crying means more time to be in “quiet absorption’, promoting learning and positive interactions with the world.
•    Babies with colic can be hard to soothe, but the motion gained from being gently rocked in a sling while the parent walks often helps to settle them.
•    A good sling that encourages an upright position can reduce posseting and reflux, and a spread squat postion helps relax puborectalis muscle, to aid bowel elimination
•    It encourages bonding with the parent and helps to meets baby’s strong need for a sense of security and attachment, which will lead to greater confidence and independence later in life.
•    The motion experienced by a baby in a sling allows its vestibular balance apparatus to develop more rapidly and enhances motor development and muscle strength. It improves neck and head control, but is not a substitute for “tummy-time” (tummy-time head-lifting is against gravity).
•    It is believed to encourage sociability; being able to hear the parent’s voice close up and watch their interactions with the world and other people from a higher vantage point is beneficial and also aids formation of family relationships.
•    There is evidence to suggest that baby’s sense of smell and speech are encouraged by being held close more often.
•    It allows baby to retreat from an overwhelming world and snuggle into the parent’s body for respite when needed.
•    Good, correctly designed slings that encourage the physiological spread-squat position can help prevent hip problems later in life in those children at risk of hip dysplasia.
•    Babies who are carried are less at risk of plagiocephaly (the flattening of the skull bones at the back of the head from prolonged periods lying on the back, more common since the “Back to Sleep” campaign).