5 Essential Baby Gadgets: #1 – Baby Carrier

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This is the fifth in a 5-part series of articles on essential gadgets and stuff for a baby. Make sure to read the entire series!

#5 | #4 | #3 | #2 | #1

The Ergo: Goldilocks and the three baby carriers

As with the travel tent, the Ergo has been indispensable for us. We carried our eldest in it from the age of 7 months to just over 2 years of age. I may have come late to the Ergo but I am a true convert.

Our first baby carrier, a gift, was a Baby Bjorn. And the Baby Bjorn was good for us at first. It’s lightweight, easy to wear and allows babies to be front facing once they can support their heads. Because of the way that a baby sits in this carrier, there is some debate as to whether it could lead to hip problems which, in turn, could lead to delayed walking in infants who spend prolonged periods of time in this style of carrier. But no matter really, as a parent you won’t want to wear this carrier for prolonged periods of time. With this design, all the baby’s weight is literally resting on your shoulders. Not good for your back once baby starts packing on the pounds.

Our second carrier was a Mai Tai that I bought from the Bangkok based company OneLove. I loved the simplicity of it and how snuggly my newborn fit into it. But it had one drawback for me and that was that I found it to be a two person job to get it on and tied up tight enough. It also had a tendency to loosen up as time went on and I seemed to be forever readjusting it. I found it to be great for short trips but not practical if I was out at the mall and needed to change a dirty diaper. Getting it off was fine. Putting it back on solo was a challenge. Maybe I didn’t give it enough time. But more importantly, my husband wouldn’t use it because he found it too “fussy”. And it was important that we had a carrier that we both enjoyed and could use.

Our third, and last, carrier was the Ergo. Four years ago you couldn’t find them in the shops here in Thailand. I had to order mine from the US and have it shipped to Canada while on a visit to family. Now you can get them in Bangkok at Naturally Bebe on Thonglor Soi 13. The manufacturer has done a lot over the years to improve on an already great design. Though I confess to having preferred the original infant insert, a very non-scientific poll of fellow Ergo users shows that I am in the minority.

The Ergo just ticked all the right boxes for us. It’s easily adjustable and my husband likes using it. And because of the waist belt design the baby’s weight is distributed more evenly, making it much more comfortable to wear for longer periods of time. The design is also much more ergonomic for your little one. Your baby’s legs will not ‘dangle’ like in a Baby Bjorn but rather they sit on their bums and their legs are spread out in a way that doesn’t hinder natural skeletal and muscular development. The little cover that’s attached is great for running through rain showers, keeping the sun off, covering up for breastfeeding and securing baby’s head from wobbling when they fall asleep. And crucially, for us anyway, it allows you to carry Junior on your back. Especially handy for those times when you want to free up your hands.

A good baby carrier is a must, in my humble opinion, when you live in a city like Bangkok – where everyone knows that sidewalks are not exactly conducive to walking let alone pushing a stroller. Strollers are great for the mall and airports. Not great for BTS travel.

You need a carrier that you feel comfortable with. And, like me, you may have to try a few before you find the one that’s right for you and your baby.

My name is Jodie. I'm a 38 year old Canadian working and living in Bangkok, Thailand. My husband and I are both international teachers - though I'm taking this year off to be a full-time mom.

When we're not busy with other people's kids, we try our hand at raising our own very curious nearly four year old son and his 9 and half month old brother. When it comes to parenting, like most of us, I’m making a lot of it up as I go along .

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