Just like any physical activity, there are certain safety precautions which must be considered in baby wearing. Most are common sense, but the guidelines are particularly important to remember when carrying a newborn baby that has limited head control. The acronym TICKS was created to help with remembering the safety basics of baby wearing:
- In view
- Close enough to kiss
- Keep chin off the chest
- Supported back
- Your baby’s face should always be visible, and you can easily check him without opening the fabric.
- The carrier should mimic the way you hold the baby in arms or at least keep the baby in an upright position with his airway open and clear.
- The carrier should be easy to handled, especially when you want to get the baby into a safe position, without having to hassle with a buckle or other strange system.
- The carrier should fit your body easily, and keep the baby high and tight against your chest, not hanging low on your hips.
Is babywearing is safe with respect to falls?
In the case of a caregiver accidentally tripping or falling while wearing a baby, the wearer's arms would likely be free to break the fall, while the child remained relatively safe close to the carer's centre of gravity. If the child was being carried 'in arms' without a carrier, the likelihood of injury would be much higher due to the impossibility of the wearer being able to both hold the child safely and protect themselves from injury.