Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Wear Your Toddler?

With the term 'babywearing', it is no wonder why many with a toddler have turned down every piece of information on baby-wearing altogether. While some will think that their babies are no longer 'babies', others are thinking that their more-than-10kg toddler will be heavy to be worn.

Heavy? Yes, Maybe...
Whether your little one is considered heavy depends on your level of endurance. Briefly, if you have been wearing your little one since he/she is a tiny baby (infant), then, whether your know it or not, your endurance level has been slowly building and you are more likely to withstand babywearing a heavier baby for a longer period of time. Makes sense?

Too heavy to be worn? No!
Simply put, in most cases, as long as you are willing and able to carry your baby with your bare arms, you can still wear your baby. While most slings/carriers are made to be safe for up to 15kg, it has been known that some will use their slings beyond this weight limit... though only for brief moments like a short trip to the neighbourhood stall.

My dear Sis wearing my 13.5kg niece

While I am not encouraging anyone to use any sling for a little one more than 15 kgs, I am trying to let you know that it is definitely not too late to get a sling when you have a 10kgs toddler. Not late even if your little one is 14kgs!

My dear niece and I

All in all, in terms of wearing a heavy little one, it all depends on the type of carrier used (pouch, ring sling, mei tai, wrap?), the situation (crowded?), the duration (a short 15 mins walk?), the activity involved (shopping, running around?) etc. for babywearing to be comfortable. All I can say, in this case, wearing your little one will definitely be much less painful to carrying he/she with your bare arms.

Generally, for a toddler who has just discovered his/her legs,

  • that would be the time you would wear your baby the most...
  • this is the time when it's no longer possible for you to carry her with your bare arms for long periods of time...
  • this is the time she tries to explore the world on her legs but feels tired soon and needs a cuddle...
  • also, to me, this is the time we really want to keep them close to us when there's a crowd...
  • it's simply harder for them to wiggle off you when they are in the sling ;)
  • for most babies, once they reach around 10kgs, their weight start to increase at a slower rate... Arthur is 12kg... my little 4 year old niece is 14kg... and, yes, my sis still wears her esp when they are on a trip or at crowded areas.

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