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Pregnancies are complicated, this is true even for the healthiest people. When you’re pregnant, you can go through immense pain, cramping or exhaustion. None of these are ideal situations, especially if you’re pregnant but also have a baby already. It is common for parents to carry children who are 1-2 years old. However, this can have risks if you are pregnant; which is why it is important to understand what these risks are and what you should do while you carry your child when you’re pregnant.
Is It Safe to Carry a Toddler while Pregnant?
Before you ask yourself is it OK to carry a baby while pregnant, it is important to consider if it is safe to do that. Depending on the weight of your baby and how far along you are in your pregnancy, it can be safe for both your unborn baby and the one you hold in your arms to carry them. It is considered unsafe during the third trimester of your pregnancy to strain yourself in any possible way, during this time it is recommended for the safety of both your babies that you don’t carry them. In the first trimester it is usually okay to carry your baby without restraints but in the second trimester, it is recommended that you only carry your child if they are below the weight of 13 kilos.
What Are The Potential Risks?
There can be risks to picking up a toddler while pregnant, it is important to know them and the reasons why doctors say you should consider safety parameters when carrying your child when pregnant. Not adhering to the safety parameters could cause major risks to both your children.
2. Injuries to The Child
The strain and fatigue could also impair your ability to hold onto your baby firmly causing them to fall and leading them to numerous injuries.
3. Complications for The Mother
How to Lift Your Child Safely?
Here are a few safety tips to help you carry your child safely:
- Never carry your child if you feel tired or breathless
- Never carry your child if they weigh above 13 kilos
- Carry them while sitting down
- While carrying them, ensure another caregiver is present
- Don’t carry your child and walk around
- Make sure that you carry your child for a short time and limit the number of times you carry them in a day
- While picking up your child, make sure you bend your knees and don’t strain your back or abdomen
- Don’t make any sudden, jerky movements when carrying your child
Talk to your doctor and make sure you regularly check your sugar and pressure levels and do not risk carrying your child when pregnant without your health care advisor’s go-ahead.
Other Important Considerations
When holding a newborn baby when pregnant, you need to make sure you take some considerations that aren’t mentioned above, this is so that you do not hurt yourself or either of your babies when carrying your child.
1. Lift Your Toddler Only when it is Important
Try as much as possible not to carry your child unless it is absolutely essential, this is particularly important during the third trimester. Carrying your child unnecessarily can strain your body, in the third trimester of your pregnancy, your body is already under an extremely high amount of stress. The additional strain can hurt your unborn child, your baby or you, if not careful all three could become a reality. A key point to remember is that you should carry your child while being seated in a comfortable position when you do carry them. A great way to help you carry your child is to do so when sitting with them and reading them a story, be sure that you carry them for short periods of time and around the same time everyday though, as this can become a routine and will help them understand that they won’t be carried all the time. Carrying them for short periods of time, even when seated will help you preserve your energy and keep your baby safe.
2. Engage Your Baby in Other Activities
Carrying your child is an intimate and important part of their development, it is proven that your child will be more psychologically stable when they have a lot of physical contact with both parents from an early age, due to the pregnancy however, it is essential that you engage your baby in other activities that compensate for you carrying them, some of these activities include incorporating music into their day to day interactions with you, talking to them or engaging them in private quality time with you. It is very important that you find ways to connect to your child in ways that don’t have to connect to them, it is also proven that your baby cries and fusses less when they are engaged in productive activities. Talk to a child psychologist to find out what baby activities can help you engage with your child, keep them occupied while helping them develop without you carrying them when you are pregnant.
3. Use Other Ways to Show Affection to The Older Child
Carrying your child is often a sign of affection to them and you, it is intimate and important. This isn’t the only way to show them affection however, there are numerous ways to show them affection and build an intimate and caring connection with them, you can kiss them on the forehead or cheeks, hug them while sitting down, feed them, bathe with them, play with them, listen to music with them or read a story to them. Showing your baby affection at an early age is extremely important for them to grow and develop in a way that is healthy for their mental health. Showing your baby affection in many ways will also help them recognize affection from other people and help them build healthy and good emotional connections. Remember, there are numerous ways to show them affection, if you feel like they aren’t getting attention unless you carry them, it possibly is your insecurity more than their requirements, consult a psychologist who specializes in childcare to know what techniques can be used to show them affection.
4. Understand That it is Okay Not to Lift Sometimes
One of the most important aspects of early childhood development is to understand that there are very few times when you actually should carry your child, most other times, it is a placebo that helps the parent assume they are comforting the child. Remember that it is okay not to carry your child and don’t guilt yourself into carrying them often, especially when you are expecting a child of your own.
Remember, when you are pregnant and you also have a young baby, you have three lives to care for. This is why you should take every precaution possible to ensure their health as well as yours. Talk to your partner and other caregivers and ask them to help as much as possible, consult your doctors, keep up with the tests you require and don’t strain yourself unnecessarily by constantly carrying your little one when it isn’t necessary.
Also Read: Weight Lifting While Being Pregnant