The following is the information I give with the ring slings I make and sell. I like the ring slings with lightly padded side rails and shoulder pad the best because of their versatility. (Just a note about how versitile and useful these slings are, I even made one for a cat and her owner!) However, I also use hip slings, moby wraps, and maya slings depending on the situation I am in. I have used slings with both my children from newborn until about 35 pounds (which means I still use a sling with my 3 year old) and I have my slings ready to go for the upcoming new baby.
I believe a sling is worth it’s weight in gold! It is the baby tool you will probably use most often and for the longest stretch of time. So, for the money you invest in a sling, it may be the most frugal purchase you make for your baby.
About Your Sling
This versatile carrier enables you to keep baby close while giving you the freedom of both hands. Wearing your baby soothes fussiness, promotes bonding, and is very comfortable for both of you.Unlike a front carrier, a baby sling distributes the baby’s weight across your shoulder and hip. It does not stress your lower back. Using the different positions, you may wear your baby using your sling from newborn till 35 pounds. Other comfort features include padded side rails, a shoulder pad, and one-hand adjustment. The sling is easy to put on and take off even when the baby has fallen asleep. It is also compact enough to store in a diaper bag.
How to use
There are at least five positions you may use to carry your child. First slip the sling over your head and onto one of your shoulders. The shoulder pad should fit right over your shoulder with the rings in your front. The baby should rest in the sling at your waist or above. Adjust the sling by holding your baby where you want her to ride while pulling down on the tail. Important safety note: Always keep some of the sling fabric between your baby’s body and your own.
||Your infant will lie cradled in the sling with her head on the same side as the rings. Hold your baby in one arm while opening the hammock with the other hand. Lay your baby in the sling with her head close to the rings. This hold is useful for newborns and when breastfeeding. When breastfeeding, you may cover your baby’s head with the sling fabric for privacy.
||Similar to the Cradle hold, your baby’s head lies on the opposite side of the rings. This is also a common position for breastfeeding or sleeping babies.
||This position holds your baby upright and facing you. This is a common hold for sleeping babies. The upper rail will support your baby’s head against your body. To decrease slack in the upper rail for more support, pull the fabric that corresponds to the upper rail through the rings. This is called bubbling. (Note: This is different than simply pulling down on the tail to adjust.) Variations: leave your baby’s feet inside the sling or let your baby’s feet ride outside of the lower rail.
||Once your baby has good head and neck control, this may become your favorite position. Hold your baby facing forward with one arm while opening the hammock with your other hand. Gently slide your baby, bottom first, into the sling so that the baby’s back is against your chest. Your baby may cross her legs Indian-style or hold her knees up to her chest. Reminder: Be sure there is sling fabric between your body and the baby’s.
||This is a great position for toddlers. Just place your child on your hip and wear the sling around the baby’s back and bottom. Your child’s legs will hang out of the sling.Variations: Place your arm behind your child so she is mostly on your front, or move your arm to your front and your child will ride more on your back. However, do not wear your child completely on your back. With the shoulder pad, there is too much slack and your child will not be secure.
Sling Removal with Sleeping Baby
Babies often fall asleep in the sling. Next to your body, your baby will feel so safe, warm and secure. This, combined with your movements, may lull her to sleep. If you want to set your child down, bend over carefully until your baby is lying down on the surface, slide yourself out of the sling, and leave your baby fast asleep. You may undo the sling if you like, or use the sling as a blanket.
Caring for your sling is simple: machine wash cool on the gentle cycle and line dry.
Safety and Warnings
Your baby sling is safe and secure when used properly. Please read the following cautionary statements and follow the instructions. Failure to do so could result in serious injury to your child.
• Be aware that your sling has no straps holding your baby in. Your baby CAN climb out. Do not use the sling with an uncooperative child.
• Until you are very comfortable using the sling, always keep one hand on your child for safety.
• Always hold onto your child when bending over or moving quickly, you do not want your child falling out of the sling.
• Be careful going through doorways and around corners, or moving around anything sharp or hot. Your child’s head or limbs may extend beyond your body.
• Never cook while wearing your baby in the sling.
• Your sling is not to be used while participating in sports.
• Your sling IS NOT A CAR SEAT or bike seat. It is only to be used to carry your child.
• Do not put anything but your child in the sling.
• Always be aware of the rings as you take off or put on a sling when your baby is in it. The rings are created to hold a lot of weight and could hurt your baby if they were to hit her.
• Before each use, make sure that the fabric and seams are in good condition. If there are areas that look worn or frayed do not use it.