When it’s time for baby to face the world in their pushchair
You’ve had your baby. You’re getting the hang of this parenting business. You’ve chosen your travel system or pushchair. You’re even getting some sleep. But now you’re confused about when your baby should be lying down in their carry cot? Sitting up facing you in their pushchair? Facing away? Buggy bar on or off…? It’s a complicated business and there always seems to be that parent at your baby group who says their baby is a step ahead of yours.
Sound familiar? Breathe. Don’t panic. We’re here to help.
First up. That parent at the baby group. Don’t engage. You will make the right decisions for your baby at the right time. There’s no rush. You’ve got about 20 years to crack this, so take it in your own time and at the pace that’s right for your family.
Second, if you make a change, and your baby isn’t keen, you can always change it back again. No drama.
How long should my baby be in the carry cot and when can they move to the pushchair seat?
Newborn babies need to lie flat. You can use your carry cot for them to sleep in during the day and if you go away so they have a comfortable space that’s cosy and familiar.
But when to move them on? Most pushchairs have a reclining seat, so baby doesn’t need to be sitting upright before you put them in a pushchair seat if this is the case. Every baby is different, but if your pushchair seat does recline, you can try them from around 4 months, when they have full control of their head.
Facing me or facing the world?
Now there’s another decision to make…. whether to put them facing you or the outside world. Research shows it’s probably best to have them facing you, at least to begin with. As a parent, you’re far more likely to chat to them, bond and engage with them if you’re looking at them. Tell them about what you can see and where you’re going. It’s good for their development and reassures them to see and hear you.
Once they’re straining to look round and making their frustrations clear, that’s the time to turn them round. A walk in the country becomes an adventure, looking at the birds, the big trees, how green the grass is. It’s a great learning curve for them, and keeps them happily entertained while you are out.
Bar on or bar off?
And then there’s the buggy bar debate. They can be handy to help your little one feel secure and to clip toys on to. But they can get in the way when manoeuvring your child in and out. A bar that unclips on one side is really helpful, but ultimately, it’s your decision. A buggy bar or bumper bar is, when all’s said and done, there for safety. In the unlikely event your pushchair tips forward, it helps to protect baby from any harm.
Have faith in your own judgement and know that the choices you make are right for you and your baby.
And about that parent in the baby group, rise above them. There’s no rush. You’ve got this and you’re doing a great job!