Parenthood is indeed the most remarkable phase. The joy and happiness of holding your little one for the first time surpass and outweighs everything in this world. However, carrying and holding such a fragile little baby may be a bit daunting for first-time parents. It’s actually important to learn how to carry your baby well. We explain how best to position – with step by step guide so you could find out which ones will work best for your baby and you.1. Shoulder hold (snuggle hold)
The shoulder hold is natural hold for a baby. Bring your baby parallel to your body and lift them to your shoulder height. Allow the baby to rest his/her head on your shoulder. Now place your one hand on the baby’s neck and head to provide support and the other hand on your baby’s bottom. Babies sleep well in this position, too. It also allows them to hear your heart beating and breathing. This is a great position for almost any age.
Bending down to pick up your baby, it gets easier and be safe for yours. Place the baby's head in the crook of one of your arms and wrap your other arm around the baby or hold the original arm with the second arm. Cradle position is ideal for breastfeeding and making your baby fall asleep. It is also a great position for skin-to-skin contact.
This is one of the easiest and wonderful holds to interact with your baby. Place one hand behind your baby’s neck and head while the other hand on your baby’s bottom. Bring your baby close to your chest facing you. It’s also important to keep in mind that face-to-face interaction is an opportunity for lots of positive emotion. Babies are indeed sponges that want to soak up everything you offer them, and they get great pleasure from looking at you, studying your expressions, processing your words and emotional tones. It’s how they learn, and how they form their attachments.
This hold calms a gassy baby and is ideal for making the baby burp. Place your baby on your forearm with his stomach facing down and his/her face slightly outward. Make sure that the head is resting in the bend of your elbow. Let the legs hang on either side of your hand. Hold the baby close to yourself. Now using your other arm to lay across baby's back to hold him/her securely. You can also do this across your lap or use it for burping. The comfort of this position depends on how long your arms are. A variation is to place the supporting hand between the baby's legs for a more secure grip. You can also bounce your legs a bit for added help in gas relief.
This hold will make your curious little one happy. Let your baby’s backrest on your chest thereby providing support to the head and neck muscle. Now place one hand on your baby’s chest so that baby doesn’t lean forward or on sides and place the other hand on baby’s bottom. If you are trying this position while you are sitting then simply place your baby on your lap and place your hand on his chest. While his back is resting against your chest. It is also advisable to try this hold position once your baby’s neck muscle is developed which is usually after 3 months.6. Lap hold
This hold can be used when you are bottle feeding your child. All you need to do is sit and place your feet firmly on the ground or on the floor and make sure that your knees are joined. Place your baby on your lap facing you in such a manner that your knees support his/her head, while his feet touches your waist region. Now gently place both your hands behind his/her head while your forearm runs along the side of your baby’s body.
7. Football hold
This hold is quite similar to that of cradle hold and can be used while standing or sitting. This hold is very useful for feeding purpose as well. Gently place your hand on your baby’s neck and head and rest the baby’s back on the inside edge of the same forearm. Slightly curl the baby around the side of your body so that the legs extend behind. Place your baby close to you. Use the other free hand to feed your baby or to provide additional support to the baby.8. Hip hold
Once your baby has some good head and neck control, the hip hold is a great, one-armed technique for holding your baby. All you need to do is just make your baby sit in your hip bones with his feet hanging on both sides and his/her head facing outward. Now wrap your arm around her waist. You can use your free hand to provide additional support to your baby by holding their feet, bottom or back or simultaneously you can also use it for performing other tasks. This is a great way for your baby to look around, and it gives you a free hand. You can also combine this with the use of a sling or other baby carrier.
- No holding the baby without an adult present (for older siblings)
The feeling of holding your baby for the first times is always magical, but at the same time, it involves a lot of other factors too. These tips are come from our grandmothers and doctors have been sharing for centuries. To be honest, a mother knows the best. Her instinct guides her in the positive direction, always. So, dear mom, please trust your instinct, too!
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