How to Choose The Perfect Baby Carrier For An 8-Month-Old Baby?
Along with being very practical and super convenient, baby carriers are preferred by many new parents for a lot of reasons. Baby carriers let you carry around your baby through crowded places and help you do everyday tasks with ease. While many parents are concerned about the safety of such carriers, a few others are unsure of when to start using one.
Baby carriers are a fun and healthy way to carry your babies with you! There are different types of baby carriers for babies of different age groups with different needs. The main ones fall under these categories: baby slings, baby carriers, and baby backpack carriers. Since being close to the parents is extremely important for babies, these baby carriers can help keep your baby safe and close to you.
Based on your baby’s age and developmental milestones, you can buy baby carriers that will make both you and your baby feel comfortable. If you’ve got a baby at home, investing in a good baby carrier can come in handy a lot more than you think! Let’s learn more about them and how you can choose the right carrier for your baby.
When Can You Start Using a Baby Carrier?
Though there are some baby carriers for even 1-month-old babies, it is best advised to use baby carriers only after your baby is 4 months old. This is because babies under the age of four can find it hard to hold up their heads on their own, and placing them in a carrier can put them at a greater risk of neck injuries.
When carrying a baby in a carrier, neck support is crucial, especially during the first few months. You should also be mindful of your baby’s hip support. Besides being carried in baby carriers and slings, babies also need some physical activity for healthy growth and development. Make sure your baby gets enough tummy time and other physical activities to counteract any time he or she spends in a baby carrier.
Note: Premature babies, babies who had low birth weights, were ill at birth, or are younger than four months, are more likely to suffocate in baby carriers. It’s advisable to consult your family doctor or paediatrician before using any kind of baby carrier.
Benefits of Using Baby Carriers
Did you know that babywearing is actually beneficial for the overall development of babies?
Moreover, a baby in a carrier can hear your voice, feel your warmth, and be close to your heart. According to experts, carrying your baby in a carrier makes the baby feel safe and at ease. As a matter of fact, it has also been observed that babies who are carried tend to cry less during the day and at night.
Here are a few benefits of using baby carriers for both babies and mothers
- Baby carriers help promote your baby’s physical development as babies in a carrier are placed in an upright and comfortable position. It can avoid flat head syndrome and improve digestion (helping with colic and refluxes).
- Babywearing also enables communication with your baby. When you carry them close, you develop a keen sense of your baby's movements and facial expressions. Many parents who wear their babies vouch that they can effectively communicate with them without the baby crying or making a fuss.
- Another obvious benefit of using a baby carrier is being able to travel with your baby easily. You don’t have to worry about pushing around a stroller and enjoy being hands-free.
- Since babies in carriers spend less time crying, it’s good for their cognitive and social development. Babies spend more time learning and interacting with their surroundings. Babies can observe and learn from their parent’s conversations and activities as they constantly move around with their parents.
- Lastly, using baby carriers can increase your bonding time with your baby. With the baby close to you at all times, you tend to talk and interact with them a lot. This is a great way to reconnect with your baby after pregnancy.
Things To Keep In Mind While Buying A Baby Carrier
At 8 months old, babies have a comparatively stronger head and neck control. At this age, you can either use a front-facing baby carrier or a back carrier. This way, your baby can enjoy both physical contact with you as well as get to observe his surroundings.
Here are some factors to consider when you buy a baby carrier for your 8-month
- Your baby’s comfort: The first and foremost thing to consider is your baby’s comfort and safety. The perfect carrier should have broad padded shoulder and waist straps and properly support the baby’s head and neck.
If you decide to use a front carrier, ensure that the leg holes are just big enough for your baby's thighs but not too loose for the baby to slip through. Take your baby along with you and try it on him while you buy a carrier.
- Your comfort: Along with your baby’s comfort, you also need to ensure your comfort and safety as you’re the one carrying the baby! Your baby carrier should fit your body size and type and not cause any physical strain, even if you must carry your baby for long hours.
Make sure that the carrier feels comfortable on you and provides good lumbar support that lessens the back pain experienced from carrying the baby.
- Versatility: You must choose a baby carrier that can accommodate your growing baby. Instead of buying a one-size-fits-all carrier, you can buy one with adjustable straps. The carrier should also be easy to pack and carry wherever you go.
1st Step’s baby carriers come in 5 carrying positions with adjustable waist and shoulder straps. They also feature a detachable hip seat that can be separately detached from the carrier to use when the baby grows old. Our baby carriers are suitable for babies in the age group 6-36 months.
- Height and weight limits: This is one of the most important factors to check when you buy a baby carrier. All baby carriers have a specific height and weight limit that you should check before buying one. Once your baby outgrows a specific carrier, you should change the carrier immediately.
- Breathable fabric: Babies tend to feel warmer than usual in baby carriers. You should opt for a carrier that is suitable for all weather conditions. If you live in a hotter region, make sure your carrier has an inner lining of cotton fabric for easy airflow and comfort. If you are in a colder region, buy a baby carrier made of fleece or one with extra padding.
- Price: Finally, you should also consider the price of the baby carrier before you buy one. While slings are less expensive than soft structured baby carriers, they are not best advised for an 8-month-old baby. You shouldn’t settle for a product just because it’s more affordable. You should always look for factors like safety and comfort over the carrier's price.
Baby Carriers: Safety Tips
Before purchasing a baby carrier for your 8-month-old baby, you should be aware of some safety guidelines
- Always buy a baby carrier with the European standard EN 13209-2:2005 or the US standard ASTM F2236-08. Check if it comes with a written or visual manual to understand its usage better.
- Make sure your baby's mouth and nose are not being constrained by the fabric or your body while wearing them in a carrier. When using a baby carrier, it's important to ensure the baby's head is up and above the cloth, the face is visible, and the nose and mouth are fully free from anything that can restrict airflow.
- Use the baby carrier only until you and your baby feel safe. If your baby has overgrown or has put on weight, you should immediately get a new one or stop using the carrier, as it might be uncomfortable for the baby. Always check for the carrier’s maximum weight limit.
- Make it a habit to check the straps for any kind of discomfort or damage each time before putting your baby inside the carrier. If you find faulty straps or damaged buckles, you should stop using the carrier immediately.
- Your baby carrier should be suitable for all seasons. Ensure your baby doesn’t get overheated during the summer months or is too cold during the winter.
- When you need to bend down with a carrier, make sure you bend at the knees and not with your hips. Bending with your waist can cause your baby to fall out of the carrier. You can also hurt your back.
- When you are carrying your baby in a carrier, be careful not to do any active physical activities like running, cycling, or other adventure sports. You should also be mindful of carrying food and drinks while wearing your baby. Working in the kitchen with your baby is strictly not advisable.
Along with these, you can research more about the DOs and DON’Ts of babywearing for a safe and comfortable experience.
Carrying your baby in a baby carrier or sling can benefit you and your baby. While you can enjoy moving around hands-free, babies can also enjoy being close to you for longer durations.
However, choosing the right carrier is not an easy task as it requires a lot of research and trial-and-error before settling on the perfect one. Make sure you shop for different styles and try them on for maximum comfort. You can never go wrong with a simple, sturdy and versatile baby carrier that will bring you and your baby closer to each other.
1st Step’s baby carriers are designed to make your outings with your baby a lot easier and more fun. With adjustable straps and comfortable carrying positions, our baby carriers provide great comfort and support to your baby’s head, neck, spine, and hips.