Bella's Little Ones

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CHOOSING THE IDEAL BABY CARRIER


Here are some "Key Areas" to consider to help you navigate through our exciting range of quality ergonomic baby carrier solutions. The following information is an informative guide.


5 KEY CONSIDERATIONS

1. TYPES OF BABY CARRIER SOLUTIONS: Baby Wraps, Baby Slings, Soft Structured Carriers, Structured Framed Carriers.

2. MY BABY/ CHILD - Age and Developmental Stage, Weight and Size.

3. BABY CARRIER FEATURES - Ergonomics, Quality, Materials, Ease of Use, Colour and Design, Style and Purpose.

4. BABY CARRIER PURPOSE: Carrier Use - Where, When, How Often, Who will be carrying. My lifestyle activities - everyday, shopping, beach, pool, hiking?

5. SEASON AND CLIMATE CONSIDERATIONS - Where I live in Australia. Average Temperatures? Travelling Considerations.




1. TYPES OF BABY CARRIER OPTIONS

BABY CARRIER TYPE
IDEAL AGE RANGE
BELLAS LITTLE ONE STOCK THESE QUALITY PRODUCT SOLUTIONS
Baby Wraps: Quality wraps are very popular - Most of these are made of soft stretchy materials which can be tied around the parents and adjusted to secure your little one in a close upright position on your chest.
Ideal Age Range: Particularly ideal for Newborn to 12 months - there are some varieties of Wraps designed to carry children up to approx. 2 years or longer. (such as the Hugabub Baby Wrap with Pocket) Always check the weight guide.
Quality Baby Wraps we stock are:
  • Hugabub,
  • Ergobaby Wrap,
  • Boba Wraps,
  • ByKay Jersey and Denim
Wraps and a Wet Water option for Beach/Pool/Shower called the ByKay Aqua Wrap .
Soft Structured Carriers: These soft structured carriers are a fantastic baby carrying solution with a combination of soft and padded structure and with a variety of buckles and straps to ensure a comfortable adjustable ergonomic fit for both the parent and the child. These carriers come in a range of colours and styles and features with some being made of cottons, organic cottons, and cooler mesh combinations.
Ideal Age Range: Most Soft Structured carriers have features that enable them to be used from newborn. Some carriers eg: All Ergobaby Carriers require an Infant Insert as a separate product to be purchased to go with the carrier to enable carrying a newborn to approx. 5 months old. The Infant Insert cacoons the infant and positions them higher in the carrier to be in the visible and kissable position. The Manduca, and lillebaby range of carriers have an inbuilt adjustment to enable the carrier to adjust to carrying your little one from newborn through to 6 months. All of these carriers are then suitable for carrying your little one to approx.36 months.
3 Positions Carriers : Most Soft Structured carriers offer 3 carry positions - for child facing in "belly to belly", "hip carry" or "back carry" positions such as: We stock quality 3 position soft structured baby carriers:
Manduca Range,Boba Range Ergobaby (Original, Performance &Ventus Range). Caboo ByKay4
Position Carriers:An example of Baby Carriers that offer the 3 positions as per above and the 4th outward facing option are: Ergobaby 4 Position 360 or the lillebaby COMPLETE Carriers. ( carrying a child facing outwards from 6 months onwards- or once your infant has developed stable neck control and core body strength in independent sitting)
Structured Framed or Backpack Carriers: These carriers are an excellent design for active living out and about - in town, for day walks or serious hiking.
Ideal Age Range: 6 months up to 3/4 years. Many of these carriers can be free standing to enable easy access to position your little one inside the carrier seat and then be lifted up onto the carriers back
Quality Framed Carriers we stock are: example- Osprey - Poco Plus
Baby Slings: Slings are made of soft fabrics generally worn across the parent's body cradling the infant close to the chest with the added benefit of enabling discreet breastfeeding.
Ideal Age Range: Slings are most commonly used for Newborn to 6 months. (although some slings are designed for use for 12 months plus) Convenient and simple to use - Precautions need be followed with full awareness of the babies positioning to ensure a baby is never positioned in a curled posture and their airways are kept clear at all times. (refer to the Safe BabyWearing guide TICKS chart at the end of this page.)
Quality Sling Brands we stock are:
  • Hugabub Ring Sling (in cotton or 100% Organic cool mesh)
  • Peanut Shell Sling. (cotton)



2. MY BABY - CONSIDERATIONS


MY BABY - AGE AND DEVELOPMENTAL STAGE

Babies develop through some key developmental milestones. It is important to match your "baby carrying solution" to the physical development and stage of your child. From being totally physically dependent on their parents as a newborn, your little one will build upon their skills as their muscles strengthen, they begin to develop the foundations for neck and head control, core body strength and eye hand co-ordination, to rolling, sitting, crawling, standing, walking. Our babies master these different milestones at their own unique pace. While their age and weight can give us a guide - the uniqueness of our children makes it vital to make choices based on their developmental stage as the primary consideration. It is helpful to consider where you child is in the following areas.


DEVELOPMENT STAGE
APPROX AGE:
DEVELOPMENTAL CONSIDERATIONS
Newborn to pre-sitting stage
Newborn to 5 MONTHS
Your little one is so small and fully dependent on you. It is vital to ensure that they are positioned ergonomically to support their core body and to always provide excellent neck and head support. This is a transition time from the womb. Most babies prefer to be cocooned securely for physical and emotional support. Not yet able to developmentally spread their legs as required for a sitting position it is best to position your baby with their legs still bent towards the front of them in what is referred to as the "froggy leg" position. Baby Wraps are very popular for use for this stage. Baby Carriers that provide excellent neck and head support at this stage are recommended. Soft structured carriers such as Ergobaby have a separate product called the Infant Insert which provides the additional support for your baby in this stage and raises them higher in the carrier. Manduca and Lillebaby have an inbuilt baby seat within their carrier product which enables you to raise up your baby in the carrier and enable you to provide adjustable and secure support. Both these styles enable the child to be raised up in the carrier to the "Visible and Kissable Position."
Sits independently (development of neck and head control) Crawling Walking
5 MONTHS to 18 MONTHS
In this phase your little one is gaining strength and is able to independently hold up his neck and head for a period of time. They begin to explore and move around. They still require daytime sleeps and like to be kept close to parents. This is a time of great learning and curiosity and modelling and taking cues from their parents. Baby Wraps and Ergonomic Baby Carriers which support to the child when awake and asleep in the carrier. Optimal Carriers position the child in the "M" sitting position with the child's weight distributed through their buttocks with their knees positioned slightly higher than their hip joint.
Active Mastery of Key Physical Skills. Toddler to Young Child
18 MONTH to 3 YEARS
The child is gaining greater mastery over their body in the environment. This is the time to encourage active play and movement. Soft Structured or Structured carriers are excellent for enabling an active life of exploring and learning together. Toddler Carriers will cater for the larger growing child for out and about. Structured Framed carriers are also a consideration for this age group.
Young Child. Increasing in Independence in Daily Activities.
3 YEARS PLUS
While your child is increasing in independent physical skills most still need a daytime rest - and continue to love physical closeness, cuddles and together time that is provided by special time out and about with a baby carrier. The toddler carriers cater for the larger taller growing child providing a deeper length in the main body of the carrier. The Structured Framed carriers are also excellent option -especially for hiking and out and about.

 


MY BABY - WEIGHT AND SIZE

It is important to follow the manufacturer's weight guidelines for their carriers. Some carriers are custom purpose for newborn to 12 months. Others are suitable from Newborn to 20 kg. It is important to follow the safety carrying guidelines at all times and to position your child in a way that you can view them and be fully aware of their sleeping moments and active curiosity and engagement in the world and people around them when awake. Toddler Carriers are designed to specifically cater for the larger child.It is important to ensure that your child is well supported according to their developmental stage. It is vital to ensure excellent ergonomic design and positioning from a quality carrier to protect both the parent and the child.




3. BABY CARRIER - FEATURES

ERGONOMIC DESIGNS WITH OPTIMAL QUALITY: It is very important that your carrier is ergonomically designed, diligently tested, manufactured with high quality fixtures and clasps and support materials and comply with safety materials. It is good to read the reviews on our quality carriers such as Manduca, Boba, Ergobaby and Lillebaby. The ergonomic factor of the carrier relates to how safely it positions both the carrier and the child in a way that is comfortable, supportive and healthy for their spine and joints.


For the Adult it is important: To be positioned symmetrically without any twisting of the spine. To have weight distributed evenly and efficiently to minimise any strain on the shoulders and back.


For the Infant It is Important: To be positioned in a way that supports their developmental stage - eg offering excellent neck support when the child is not yet able to support their neck head independently. When seated in the upright position to ensure that they are sitting in the "M" position on their buttocks, with their knees higher than their hip joint - to minimise any strain on the developing hip joints and with their spine well supported.


EASE OF USE: It is important to find a style that suits your lifestyle and activities. Most quality carriers have a variety of adjustments to enable you to customise the fit to suit you and your little one.





4. BABY CARRIER PURPOSE

OUR LIFESTYLE AND FAMILY ACTIVITIES: Carriers are designed to suit different ages and needs. It is important to choose a carrier that will suit your lifestyle and the season of your child.


FAMILY ACTIVITIES: It is important to think about the activities that your whole family enjoy doing. Everyday, Shopping, Beach, Swimming, dropping off other children to Kindy or School. Walking, Hiking, Picnics, going to markets or sporting events. Many people choose a carrier that will suit from newborn to early childhood years. Some people have a number of different carriers - everyday, lightweight travel option, aqua carrier or even a Mum's Favourite and a Dad's Favourite.


WHO WILL BE USING THE CARRIER AND HOW OFTEN ?Mum, Dad, Both, Grandparents? When shopping on line at Bella's Little Ones you are able to search by Brand or search by Category /Purpose. Be sure to look at our exciting range of Everyday Carriers, Organic Carriers, Toddler Carriers, Hiking Carriers, Travel Light Options, Summer Cool Carriers and Aqua/Beach and Pool Carrying options.




5. SEASON & CLIMATE

SEASON AND CLIMATE CONSIDERATIONS: Other factors to consider are the environment and climate / state I live in. The carriers and wraps are so versatile and enable you and your little one to be dressed according to comfort within your climate. Different types of carriers and fabrics make the more suited to warmer or colder environments.


COOLER CLIMATEAND WINTER CONSIDERATIONS: - Winter options - some accessories such as the Ergobaby Raincover and the winter Warmth cover are designed to cater for winter weather.


WARMER CLIMATES AND SUMMER CONSIDERATIONS: Whilst most carriers are fine to use all year around taking into consideration the temperature and warmer climates of Qld, Northern Territory, Northern WA and more inland Aussie areas - there are some cooling factors to consider. You may consider a carrier with a more organic fabric or an open weave such as the Ergobaby 3D Mesh Ventus Carrier or the Lillebaby Airflow. Check out our SummerCool Carrying Category for the latest cooler carrier suggestions. Teamed up with the Cool Mesh Performance Infant Insert or or Organic Infant Insert for Newborns to 5 months.


TRAVELLING INTERSTATE OR OVERSEAS: - It is important to consider the climate and season.




Living Life - Freedom and Joy Together


  • Keep your baby close and keep your baby safe.
  • When you are wearing a sling or carrier, don't forget to follow the T.I.C.K.S. guidelines