How to Use a Baby Sling

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How to Use a Baby Sling

Carrying a baby in a sling, or 'wearing' a baby, is a secure and comforting way for an infant or toddler to travel with a parent. A tradition in many cultures around the world, modern baby wearing involves an array of baby sling designs and models for carrying children. For parents who are new to this type of baby product, learning the right technique is essential to providing the correct support for an infant. After reviewing the various techniques involved with different products, parents can review their purchasing options for finding the right baby sling, including the option of bypassing traditional brick-and-mortar baby product vendors to search for baby slings on eBay.

Selecting a Baby Sling

As a first step, consumers should learn about the various designs of baby slings that are available in the marketplace. Each type offers its own unique features and works best with certain age ranges and weights.

Baby Sling Type

Description

Wraparound Baby Sling

Long ties wrap around parent's shoulders and waist to secure baby

Comes in one-shoulder and two-shoulder varieties

Offers a variety of carrying techniques, including front carry, hip carry, and back carry

Ideal for newborns and babies

Ring Baby Sling

A shawl wrap with a set of rings on one end

Rings sit at shoulder and opposite end threads through to secure sling

Works well from infancy to the toddler years

Pouch Baby Sling

A single piece of fabric with a curvilinear seam

Sits on one shoulder

Ideal from 4 months to 4 years

Parents can choose a baby sling based on the age of a child. Basing a choice on the complexity of a sling's design is also a good idea. Wraparound slings offer the widest variety of carrying styles but are difficult to use at times, while a pouch sling offers the simplest design. A ring sling offers easy adjustments and falls somewhere between a wraparound and a baby pouch in terms of ease of use.

Using a Baby Sling in Various Positions

Once consumers select a baby sling, they can explore a variety of carrying options. Some of these methods work best with particular age ranges, as the weight and strength of a baby affects how appropriate a carrying technique is for a child.

The Inward Front Carry

The inward front carry nestles the baby in against the parent's chest so they are face-to-face. Inward front carries work best with ring slings and wraparound slings. This type of carry is appropriate for babies old enough to have neck and back strength. The parent places the baby in the centre of his or her torso facing inward. The parent then secures the pouch according to the specific manufacturer's recommendations.

The Cradle Carry

The cradle carry offers full support to necks, heads, and spines and is primarily for newborn infants. Parents can use either a ring sling or a pouch sling for this type of carry. The parent places the baby in against the torso with the head angled up toward the right shoulder. He or she gently lowers the baby's feet down and into the pouch in the infant wrap. If using a ring sling, the parent tightens the slack so the child gently and securely cradles against the torso.

The Hip Carry

The hip carry is the best method for carrying larger babies, toddlers, and even young children. This carrying style works with any of the baby slings. The support pouch rests just above the left hip, and the child sits in the pouch with the legs wrapped around the parent's torso. The parent secures the pouch according to the manufacturer's instructions. Parents need to make sure they carry lighter children higher on the torso and larger children lower so the hips bear the weight.

The Back Carry

The back carry is ideal for large toddlers and children and works best with a wraparound sling. Essentially the child sits in a piggy-back position, and the sling serves as weight support. With a back carry, parents may need the help of a partner to secure the child. Using a two-shoulder wraparound is also a popular choice.

How to Buy Baby Slings on eBay

eBay

makes finding a baby sling easy, thanks to the search interface available on all the pages of the site. Entering a keyword term and running a search with this interface pulls up all the products on eBay related to that term. For example, running a search using a general term such as '

baby sling

' provides a wide array of options, or consumers can narrow their choices by using more descriptive terms. Carrying a baby in a sling provides parents with a nurturing and secure way to move around with an infant. With the help of eBay, consumers can find wraparound, ring, and pouch baby slings to satisfy all their baby carrying needs.

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