Are Walkers Safe For My Baby?
There is a lot of controversy over the use of baby walkers and whether or not they are safe for your baby. The next question is, at what age do you start to place your growing baby into a device similar to the walker? Here we look at whether or not the walker is right and when to start using devices like a baby walker.
Think back as far as you can when you were small, and your mom had the next baby. Think about what tools she used to calm and soothe the baby. Can you remember the time when the baby was placed into the walker, and suddenly no place in the house was safe anymore?
Can you remember thinking to yourself that you are free to play in the living room because your baby sister/brother was unable to reach you from inside the swing or playpen? Suddenly they are placed in a walker, and you find yourself running over or rammed into. No place is safe any longer. That is because back then, babies were still being placed into walkers. Now a day’s, walkers are being less used, and other devices and gadgets are being used instead.
Keep an Eye Out
If you find yourself still considering the use of a walker, you might consider using it only while under direct supervision. This means that when you sit there watching your child, then only should the walker be used. There are plenty of studies done that show that when a baby uses a walker independently and under no supervision, the baby is more inclined to suffer from injuries. These injuries can include:
- Trips and falls
- Rolling down the stairs
- Reaching dangerous places that would have been more difficult to reach outside of the walker.
- Falling out of the walker
The Academy of Pediatrics has shown that the use of walkers has led to more accidents and injuries than anything another device like a walker. Make sure that others who are responsible for your baby also follow the same guidelines.
Play Centers are More Fun Anyways
Imagine if you were forced to walk into things all day or forced to end up in one spot until someone pulls you free. That is what it is like to be in a walker as a baby. Now imagine being in one activity center with countless ranges covered in activities to keep you busy. Which one of these options are you most likely going to pick? The same idea goes for using a walker. In a walker, you are wanting to help your little one learn to bear weight on their feet, encouraging them to walk or stand independently. The use of activity centers will do the same thing for your little one.
When To Switch To An Activity Center or Walker
During the time of around six months of age, your growing baby should be transitioned from the tummy time activity mat to the activity center. It is during this time that your baby is starting to become an investigator and are curious about their surroundings. That is when it is best to switch to the activity center to help them discover new things.
An activity center will help to entertain your little one for hours per day. Imagine being able to finally read a book, catch up on your favorite TV show, or even perform household chores once again. You will be able to do more things in your home without a baby on your hip because the activity center will keep your baby entertained.
With the swivel of the chair on the activity center, the baby will have different angles of play thru out the time of play. This helps to keep the baby moving and entertained.
Exersaucers and Activity Centers Equal Safety and Fun
An exersaucer or activity center will bring happiness to your growing baby in many forms. The baby will be entertained while remaining safe. The dilemma then comes with what type is the best and how do you know which ones are best. That is where research comes into play.
You will want to look at the different types and the prices of the exersaucers or play gyms that you are interested in. There are many different types for many different types of budgets. If you have more money to spend, that does not necessarily mean you are purchasing a better one or more reliable one.
It simply means you are spending more on a device that your child will be outgrowing very soon. Consider saving some money on this item and researching the types that perform the same function while saving you money.
Many of the different jumper’s will have 360 degrees of fun. These different degrees will have lights and sounds, things that spin, things that have to be triggered to play, and so on. All of these functions are things that your baby has to learn to become a growing toddler. Cause and effect are necessary to learn before becoming a toddler.
All your toys that you will start to purchase for this age are going to explore cause and effect. That is why it is so important for babies to use activity centers for self-soothing and education.
Now, if you are still a mother who feels that a walker is the best option for them either because you feel your baby will be safe or because they are cheaper than an exersaucer, then do what makes you feel comfortable if you believe that your baby is going to be better suited exploring the home and learning to bear weight. In contrast, in a walker, you have to lead with what your motherly intuition calls for.
If you decide to go with a walker, there are plenty of different types to choose from. Just like with the exersaucers or activity centers, there are many different styles out there. Just be sure to do your research before you purchase one based on the theme of the walker.