Thursday, August 3, 2017

Throwback Thursday: Car Seats, Baby Carriers

This is a repost from a post I wrote in January 2011.

It seems like everyone these days has the infant car seats with carriers. Every trip to the doctor, grocery store, restaurant you see people carrying their babies around in these.

Before getting pregnant I attended a conference put on by neuroscientists for educators. One of the things they mentioned was that babies carried around in these tended to have less brain development as babies. Since the majority of our brains develop before the age of 3, a child being carried in these for a full year can make a significant difference. A child who is carried or worn, can look around more easily, can follow their parents' gaze to see what they are talking about, and is less likely to get sick.

The last benefit is because people will be more reserved at getting in your babies faces if they are next to you. Strangers (even those that are sick) seem to have no problem kissing, holding, and touching a baby in the car seat carrier.

Once I knew this I was completely against getting the infant carrier car seats. I did tons of research to find the perfect seats for us. Then my kids were born at just over 5 pounds each. Just like most babies, they lost some of their birth weight. When it was time to take them home they weighed less than 5 pounds and our car seats weren't rated for that. My husband had to go out and buy car seats that were made for smaller babies. That's how we ended up with infant carriers.
Coming home from hospital

There were a few times we did take the car seats in someplace. Almost exclusively when they were asleep and we didn't want to wake them. The rest of the time we took them out of their seats and carried (or wore) them. They were much happier in our arms and loved being able to look around. When my son became overwhelmed by his surroundings, he could hide his face in a shoulder. They could both control what they were looking at and spent great amounts of time following our gaze.

I keep mentioning wearing the babies. During pregnancy we went to a great store (no longer in business) where they let us try on many different types of baby carriers with weighted dolls. I thought I was going to love a sling, but after trying it, it just didn't feel secure. I ended up with a Moby wrap. It looks complicated, but didn't take long to learn and I could do a twin carry! The biggest down side was how hot it felt when it was 100 degrees out.
 Twin carry - first day at home
Twin carry - 3 months old
My husband wasn't about to wear a Moby. It doesn't look cool. He ended up with a Pikkolo carrier in plain black. He could only carry one in it, but he found it comfortable and manly. We used them for trips around town, traveling, and walks around the neighborhood.
 Chicago - 2 months old
 Christmas lights - 3 months old
 Zoo - 4 months old
 First football game - 2 months old

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