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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Bjorn Original Review

Baby Bjorn Original
This is my review of the Bjorn Original Baby Carrier from Amazon.com

I am going to preface this by saying that I actually did use this, and I do not find it practical for day to day babywearing needs.

The way that baby's legs hang down without support puts pressure on baby's developing spine and hips. Any product that supports baby thusly should only be used for very short periods of time. A baby carrier is usually used for long periods of time. A properly positioned baby in a carrier would have their legs supported from knee to knee, with a deep seat for their bottom. The carrier's back would come to at least their arm pits. A newborn can be worn legs out or in, if in legs should be froggied.

Horrible. One of the most uncomfortable things I have ever worn. Once baby hits about 15lb I can't stand to carry them for more than a few minutes. And this is coming from someone who can wear a ring sling for hours.

I already talked about how baby hangs, but this is addressing how baby faces. A newborn (0-3mo) should always face in for two reasons. 1) They do not have the requisite head control or neck strength to do this and 2)Due to underdeveloped nervous systems, babies can be easily over-stimulated with nowhere to hide when forward facing. A baby carried facing in can turn their head away if the world becomes to much for them. Note: A baby will not necessarily cry if they are over-stimulated. They may close their eyes, become irritable, tense up, or try to turn away. Older babies can be worn in high back carries, like those done in a woven wrap or mei tai to see over the wearers shoulder.

Ease of Use:
This is the only area that I can give props to Bjorn. These carriers are simple to use, which has probably contributed to their popularity.

What I Would Recommend:
What else is out there that is comfortable for baby and wearer?
  • Ergonomic Carriers: I love KinderPacks way more than ErgoBaby Carriers, but either is a good choice for proper knee to knee positioning
  • Mei Tais: These ancient Chinese baby carriers have survived centuries because they are comfortable for baby and wearer. A high back carry can be done in a MT. I personally adore my CatBird Baby MT, but others swear by BabyHawk.
  • Wraps: These have a learning curve, but once you get the hang of them they are wonderful! A stretchy wrap like the Moby can be used for newborns, and woven wraps can be used for all ages.

To learn more about the kind of carriers available, check out the forums at TheBabyWearer website. It is free to join, and the community is wonderful!

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