Attachment parenting is a philosophy that aims mother and child attachment by empathy and responsiveness. The term Attachment Parenting is coined by the American Pediatrician, Dr. Willaim Sears. According to Dr. Sears, the methods of attachment parenting includes 7 practices, called the 7 B’s of parenting.
- Birth bonding
- Bedding close to the baby
- Belief in baby’s cry
- Beware of baby trainers
- Balance and Boundaries
However, these are not the set of rules to be an attachment parent instead these are the tools that help develop a connection with the child.
As one of these tools, babywearing plays a significant role in attachment parenting. It helps create a secure attachment between the caregiver and the child.
Over the years, significant research had determined that the touch and closeness increase the caregivers’ oxytocin(the love hormone) levels. To provide extra sensory input, babywearing is the easiest way through which touch and contact between the caregiver and the child can be increased. By continuing to wear the babies, the oxytocin levels rise and, the instance of stress and depression decreases.
Securely attached children often feel secure that their caregiver will respond to their needs promptly. One instance to demonstrate this is an incident where the caregiver is wearing the child in a carrier while they go on a morning stroll. The baby is happy looking at the surroundings and enjoying the view while looking at the plants, trees and other people walking around. Suddenly an ambulance rushes with the siren which startles the baby. The caregiver covers the ears of the child and leans close to kiss and soothe the baby. The noise disappears, and the baby is happy again.
In the above instance, the caregiver is responsive to the baby’s needs. When we wear the baby in a carrier, wrap or a sling, these behaviors are natural and instinctive. This is attachment parenting. Some ways to actively assist the development of secure attachment are
Wearing the child as soon as possible.
Most hospitals allow uninterrupted skin-to-skin after the birth. The benefits of which to both the mother and the child is incredible. This helps in increased bonding and also assists in milk production in a new mom. As soon as both the baby and the mother are given all clear from the medical professionals, it can be very beneficial to wear the baby; However, care has to be taken not to overexert the body. Once the mother feels well enough, she can start wearing the baby.
No time limit to wearing the child
Like breastfeeding, babywearing has no set time limit and is all about mother-baby like and need. It is a mutual decision of the mother and the child on when to stop babywearing. Don’t let anyone tell you that you are spoiling the child by wearing them. It is easier to respond to the cues of the baby by wearing them. No wonder worn babies cry less!
Let your partner wear the baby
Partners can also assist the mother by babywearing and help the mother still recovering in the early days after birth. This also helps the partner have an association with the child and the child to feel secure with them.
Babywearing has a lot of benefits for both the caregiver and the child. By teaching our child about the world, talking to them while we run our daily errands, we are allowing our child know their importance to the parents. By carrying them, we are efficiently able to respond to their cues making us more of a confident parent. Thus allowing them to experience security, familiarity, and accommodation in our hearts.
Until next time,