Body Hair

Apes, including humans, are physiologically riders, meaning that they carry their babies with them as opposed to leaving them in nests or dens because their breast milk composition is not suited to leaving their infants alone for long periods of time (Ross, 2001). Unlike humans, apes don’t need a tool to carry their infants in part because they have body hair for their infants to cling to but it’s more complicated than simply having body hair and a baby that can grasp it. Hair strength, density, infant weight, carrying position, adult posture, and even humidity play a part in successful infant carrying without tool use. Continue reading

Squished Part 2: Boney Bits

In this four-part series, I am drawing on decades of research to discredit the pernicious myth of the Obstetrical Dilemma. In the first part, I explain what the Obstetrical Dilemma is, where (and when) it originated and what some of the consequences of the myth are. In this second part, I take on the skeletal side of the theory, namely women’s pelvises and the skull of the infant, the combination of which is also referred to as fetopelvic morphology. In part three, I move on to infant development at birth to dispell this idea that human infants are born prematurely. And finally, in part four, I explain how the infant carrier has influenced the shape (literally) of the modern human by providing support for poorly clinging big headed hominids long before modern humans were on the scene. Continue reading

Does Babywearing Really Reduce Crying?

In 1986, a study was published showing that three hours of “supplemental” carrying reduced crying in newborns. The results were impressive: infants in the supplemental carrying group cried 43% less overall and 51% less during the evening hours than infants who were not given supplemental carrying. Contemporary babywearers often share these statistics as part of the benefits of babywearing to encourage people to try using infant carriers. But is that really accurate? Can the use of an infant carrier really reduce crying, or is there more to it?  Continue reading

Babywearing & Cerebral Palsy

This post includes excerpts from my post on the Iowa City Babywearers website in Feb. 2018. In the full post, I describe a specific case and how ICBW assisted a mother who wanted to safely “wear” her CP toddler, click here to read. 

About Cerebral Palsy

There is no cure for cerebral palsy. While symptoms become more noticeable with age the disease is not progressive. Preterm births, twins, and infants who experience difficult births, or head trauma during or after birth are most likely to have cerebral palsy. In some cases, it is caused by infection or environmental toxins during pregnancy and in very rare (2%) of cases, the cause is genetic. Nearly 80% of people with cerebral palsy have structural problems in the area of the brain that control movement, balance, and posture; and some will experience seizures. Continue reading

A Few Billion Years of Evolution

Are you curious about how life evolved on planet Earth? Well, grab a snack and a beverage and settle in for a few billion years. Here in part one, I am going to cover earth’s history from the start of life to the evolution of our hominin ancestors, from 4.6 billion years ago to around six million years ago. For some, this will be all new information and for others a bit of a refresher; for everyone, if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.   Continue reading