How Soon Can I Use My Baby Sling After a C-section?
Whenever you feel ready with your Health Care Provider's approval
Consult your Health Care Provider and follow their advice, but in most cases it’s about being sensible and listening to your body. Some people feel able to use a sling a day or two post surgery, others may want to wait a few weeks. Try starting slowly around the house, gradually build up the time you carry for and rest when you need to.
Is Using a Baby Sling Useful After Having a C-section?
Yes! Despite having had surgery you still have a newborn to care for while recovering and using a sling can actually help. The general advice is to not lift anything heavier than your baby post surgery.
Carrying your baby in a sling helps to support your baby and spread the weight, taking some pressure off your abdominal muscles. Using a sling to carry your baby is also much more supportive for your back and core muscles than carrying a car seat or lifting and maneuvering heavy prams so it can be an incredibly useful way of transporting your newborn for short periods without overexerting yourself.
Keeping your baby close to you in the sling can also help soothe them and allow you to read their cues quicker, which will lessen the need for you to be bending and lifting them.
The sling helps give your baby a feeling of safety, recreating a warm, safe environment similar to the womb. Both baby and carer produce oxytocin which helps with bonding, this can be especially useful if you’ve experienced any kind of birth trauma.
If you have older children it allows you free hands to help or play with them, so can help them bond with their new sibling and help you to reinforce your own bond with them.
What’s The Best Sling to Use After Having a C-section?
Choose a sling for your baby which sits above the scar and can be fully adjusted to mould to your body. Carrying your baby in a high, snug position is not only safest for your newborn, it is also the most ergonomic way for you to carry as it keeps the pressure off your core, abdominals and pelvic floor.
We look at how to use and position woven wraps and ring slings comfortably after a C-section -
A ring sling is a great choice after a c-section. They are used in a high carry with no straps or fabric around the waist and by fully spreading the fabric over your shoulder it comfortably supports your baby’s weight.
Woven wraps are very versatile so can work well after a c-section. As they can be tied in a variety of ways you can try different carries to find what you find most comfortable.
You can also use a carrier if it fits snugly and the waistband sits clear of your scar. A tie on carrier, or half-buckle can work well as the straps provide lots of adjustability and support.
A sling can be an invaluable tool to help you care for your baby post C-section. It helps your newborn transition into the world during the fourth trimester period by providing a safe, soothing space for them. While you are recovering from your C-section babywearing can provide both physical support and an important bonding experience. If you’re a new parent it can also help you gain confidence in your new role.
Importantly, remember to listen to your body and be kind to yourself.