Allows you to do almost all the things you did in life before baby
Wearing your baby is a practice older than the human race. Just look at the mammals we evolved from, monkeys, they’re attached to their mother’s from birth. Evolutionarily, babies and moms need to stay close. There are four mothering styles based on type of milk mothers produce. Thin milk is made by “carry mammals” – the mothers never leave their babies (carry everywhere and nurse often). Rich milk is made by “cache mammals”– these babies are stashed in a safe place and mother comes to feed them once in a while. The other two styles (nest and follow) are in between. Humans are carry mammals. Human milk has the lowest level of fat and protein of any mammal indicating babies need feeding often and are not meant to be separated from their mother. With this in mind, babywearing also helps boost milk supply since being in close contact with your baby boosts milk production (especially when done skin to skin).
Some more examples we can see today of the motherbaby bond are the benefits of kangaroo care and watching a mother’s core temperature raise or lower up to 2 degrees to warm or cool her baby, as needed. Being close allows the mother to learn what squirm means potty and what whimper and look is hunger, without the loud crying necessitated by distance and separation. Baby wearing also helps babies adjust to life outside the womb in a much gentler way. They experience familiar smells, sounds, and movement. Though the world is foreign they feel safe and secure since mother stays the same. Babies who are worn a lot generally cry and fuss much less. According to a q&a answer by Dr Harvey Karp on happiestbaby.com, one of the perceived causes of colic is under stimulation. Baby wearing allows a baby to experience everything mom experiences and he's not left out alone and bored, lying flat on his back. Benefits for moms include increased milk production, lowered risk of postpartum depression, and increased bonding.
With a large variety of carriers available, you can find the one that works best for your body and your baby. Heaviness of your baby (and even back pain!) should not be deterrents from trying baby wearing. Carriers such as the woven wrap can be a great option as it evenly distributes weight on your shoulders and waist and can be adjusted to how much weight goes where depending on the carry you choose. It is best to try out a carrier before buying it to see if it works for you. See if there is a store near you where you can try some out and get help using them safely from knowledgeable store associates or check for BWI’s baby wearing meetups in your area. They’re free to attend with many carriers on hand, run by trained baby wearing experts.
hipmommy - Great babywearing resource including detailed carrier information and links to fashionable (not frumpy!) nursing clothes.