Are baby slings safe for newborns?

You might have heard that the US CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) published a warning this week about the safety of infant slings. In particular, there have been a number of deaths reported when babies have been carried in bag-style slings where the baby’s face was not visible, or where the baby was able to get into a chin-on-chest position that blocked their airway. The CPSC warning included this useful example of right and wrong ways to position baby in a soft sling:

CPSC warning - diagram on how to position baby in sling

If you’ve been wondering whether it’s safe to use a baby sling at all with your newborn, don’t panic! Baby slings have been successfully used for thousands of years, in cultures all over the world. Babywearing can help newborn babies (especially premmies) regulate their temperature and breathing, increase milk supply for breastfeeding mothers with low supply, help parents or carers bond with their baby, and help settle babies (especially those with colic or reflux).

What we haven’t had in modern Western society is the knowledge passed on from our mothers and grandmothers about how to use a piece of cloth to carry our babies safely. It’s not enough just to rely on manufacturers to make a sling that is safe to use without instruction.

If you’re looking at getting a sling for your newborn, check out these newborn babywearing videos and instructions to start with; go along to a babywearing meet in your local area; get active on forums like Baby Carriers Downunder, The Babywearer, Intuitive Parenting, or Natural Parenting where there are experienced babywearers to answer your questions; or visit a shop where the staff have been trained in how to position newborns safely in soft slings. Generic Viagra 100 Mg
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About emmadavidson

An addict who started dealing to support my habit, I have been using baby slings and carriers for a few years now. My children (Sophia, born 2004; Jools, born 2005; Billy, born 2007) are happy to be lugged around town in mei tais, ring slings, soft structured carriers, and occasionally a tablecloth.
This entry was posted in Babywearing News, Ring slings and pouches and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Are baby slings safe for newborns?

  1. Mummy Crit says:

    Great post Emma, thankyou for clarifying this! I’m going to link to it on facbook.

  2. Ruby says:

    Another great post, Emma! It’s on my Facebook, too.

    I wish there were actually stores Australia wide where staff ARE trained in the positioning of babies in carriers, but I am afraid they are very few, and very, very far between. How wonderful then that there are parents running sling meets regularly across Australia and New Zealand (info available from Baby Carriers Downunder)!

  3. emmadavidson says:

    If your local shop isn’t able to help, buying online with fitting help from experienced babywearers is another good idea. Or buy online from a vendor who can provide an instruction DVD, links to online videos, or a good quality printed instruction booklet. There’s nothing like real babywearers to help you learn, though.

  4. Happy mum says:

    I just saw channel 9 news Perth. They were generalising about baby carriers (showing pouches, Bjorns) all together, and saying baby slings are unsafe. They said it’s best to avoid slings all togher for premature babies….
    I am very disappointed that they used the word “babywearing” and confused with the dangers of duffle bag type carriers. I am going to write to them.

  5. Wow, that’s shocking! I hadn’t seen anything at all on the news, but I only watch ABC News (unless I’m on the commercial news because of a protest rally or something).

  6. Pingback: Australian product recall notice for Infantino Sling Rider and Wendy Bellissimo | Baby Carriers Downunder

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