Sunday

Child Care is Back-Breaking Work

opinion 1
I was wondering if any of you fellow nannies out there are dealing with what I'm dealing with. Back Problems. I have always had a bad back, and caring for a high stress infant is probably not the best job for me... but I love it. The baby is seriously unhappy unless she is being held constantly, in motion, walked around or out for a stroll (and even then she gets annoyed and wants to be held) Her parents and I don't let her "cry it out" because they feel she is too young and I definitely agree. I love to carry her but sometimes I am afraid my back will just give out, as it has before. I can't lose work because of this and I also can't stand to hear her scream all day. Do any of you use a special sling for baby or a specific back support/brace/thing? I'm desperate! Every time I come home from work I think I may break in two. I have tried to be very careful in my movements and bending from my knees but it is still so difficult. She is not a small baby. She is quite heavy and tall for her age so it is always a bit awkward having to make sure her head is supported and lifting properly. Any advice is so greatly appreciated! Thanks.

8 comments:

Sarah NY said...

I've never had an infant quite like that but I do also have back problems... My solution, although it may not be feasible for everyone is to visit a chiropractor at least once a month and see my medical massage therapist every other month. Hope this helps :)

mousemouse said...

I bought a pair pf sketchers shape ups hoping to avoid the gym, they don't work for that but they DO make a huge difference in how my back feels! I couldn't live without them. My back used to hurt so bad after work and now it simply doesn't. It took about three days for the shoe effect to kick in. In the summer its too hot to wear them most days and I find if I do yoga a few times a week that really helps. Again it takes doing it a few times to feel the difference.

Renee IL said...

invest in good shoes. my charges are twin 15 month olds and i do deal with back pain. wearing supportive shoes all day has really helped me. also, when the babies were younger, i really liked the ergo carrier. much easier on the back than the bjorn or moby wrap. it can be especially helpful for a baby who always wants to be held.

happynanny said...

I know how hard it is to hear them cry! It tugs your heartstrings. But imagine you have three other small children, too, who also demand your attention by screaming nonstop until you do what they want... see where I'm going? Baby needs to be cuddled, held, and loved, YES, but she also needs tummy time, and most importantly, she needs to learn to self soothe. There IS a good balance between holding her nonstop and "letting her suffer". Experts say it is perfectly healthy for babies to cry up to three to four hours a day. More than that, and they may have colic, which should be checked out.
I once started nannying a baby at 12 months of age, and before I started there, she had been picked up and held EVERY time she screamed, and she couldn't walk, pull up.... she couldn't even CRAWL! In fact, she at 6 months had been able to roll over, but by 12 months had actually lost that ability!! If you put her on her tummy she would scream for 30 min straight or more (I didn't go longer than that, though) without even trying to roll over!! Glad to say she's perfectly normal now (even though she didn't start walking til almost 2). But all that to say - balance, balance, balance. Sometimes not wanting to hear the baby scream is just us being selfish on our part, not what's best for baby.

Phoenix said...

there is a wonderful medication called baclofen. It is a muscle relaxer. But the neat thing about this is that it doesn't have the loopy side effects. I've taken tons of meds and am still on some real doozey pain meds but the baclofen is very mild. All it does is relax the muscles. Ask your doc about it

NYC sitter said...

The ergo baby slings are great, I've used them with several children in my care and always found them to be both easy to use and a load off my back.

Chelsea said...

I have issues like this all the time! I work with an infant and toddler, and I am always lifting and carrying both kids (and all their stuff!). I think the infant carseat is the worst! I have gotten chiropractic work done, and try to keep up with it regularly. If not that, I use a heating pad every night (even if I am not in pain). I know it doesn't sound like much, but I have one from Brookstone that lasts 8 hours, and just put it on my back or arms when I am watching tv, or on the computer. With young infants, I have used the Bjorn, which I like, but still hurts my back after a while. I am a huge fan of baby slings. I haven't used them in a while, and I don't remember the brand I used to use, but the baby is warm and snug, and I think they are super comfortable!

Noelle said...

Not a nanny, but a mom and have had back problems (and was still having to carry my 4 year old on occasion)! I agree with the comments about shoes and a baby sling. Baby slings are awesome! Help alleviate the back pain because the baby's weight is better distributed and also free up your hands while keeping baby snug against giving that comfort. I also would recommend looking up Williams Back exercises. This link http://www.backtrainer.com/Williams-Flexion-Versus-McKensie-Extension-Exercises-For-Low-Back-Pain.html has descriptions and drawings. These are great, extremely low impact, stretching and strength building actions that a physical therapist had me do when my pain was at its worst and I still use them.