Baby walkers seem to support and help babies walk. Most parents think that baby walkers make the transition from crawling to walking much easier. But, the reality is very different. Walkers are in fact more troublesome than previously thought.
Walkers seem to be keeping the baby in “safe hands” but by placing your baby in a walker, you’re actually putting your baby in harm’s way. You might think that you could put your child in the walker and concentrate on your work. But when left alone, your baby could take a “walk” in the walker. This is a dangerous situation.
Source: Not The Nanny
There are numerous instances of walkers being responsible for many accidents and injuries among babies. Putting your baby in a walker is very similar to giving a teenager a motorcycle. As a teenager gets addicted to speed and doesn’t know how to control the machine can end up injuring himself. This is almost similar to placing the baby in a walker. A walker basically with its wheels, add speed to the walker and it would be too much to think that the baby would be able to control the speed of the walker. Walkers have a high chance of tumbling down at speeds. This can be a high risk factor as well.
The kind of injuries that can occur when a baby is in a walker include
- Rolling over: A walker can be very unstable when a baby is trying to walk from inside of the walker. If the walker picks up speed, the baby would find it very hard to control it. No, the baby wouldn’t even know that it needs to stop the walker by hook or crook. This can lead to a roll over. The roll over can be in any direction.
- Falling off of stairs: There is a chance that your baby whose room is upstairs and is placed in a walker can walk till the stair case and fall off the stairs. Rolling over the stair case is perhaps the worst case scenario you can imagine. Avoid this as much as possible.
- Spill overs: As you place the baby in the walker, the baby is much taller now and she can access many things that are otherwise not accessible to her. Sometimes, she can “walk” up to a table, gain some strength to pull off a table cover which might have hot coffee or soup placed on it. This can lead to 2nd degree burns on the skin.
- Reaching for unwanted things: As your baby can stand and walk taller with the walker, there is also a high chance that he or she might grab a sharp object or anything that can hurt your baby.
These are some of the risks of a baby walker.
Here are some safety tips and measures to avoid any of the above mentioned and other accidents.
You can still buy a walker for your baby, provided if you can check for certain adjustments and standards in the walker.
- Slow walkers: These days, some walkers are being designed to walk slowly. Even as the baby struggles by rubbing his or her feet against the floor, the walker barely moves. You could opt for such a walker.
- Wheel lock down: Apart from “slow walking” walkers, walkers are being equipped with wheel locks. By pressing a lever, you can lock down the wheels and they don’t roll even when your baby is vigorously rubbing his or her feet against the floor. This is a good feature, if you want your baby to stand still, until your finish your work.
- Don’t buy used walkers: If you think that instead of paying a hefty price for a new walker and buying a user walker is better, think again. A used walker might have problems, that might not be visible in the first place. You don’t want any loose ends when it comes to the safety of your baby. Think twice before buying used walkers. Besides, used walkers might be technically inferior to the latest designs such as auto-lock wheel s or slow walking wheels.
- Read the instructions carefully: Also, if you’re buying a new walker, opt for a safe walker for your child, even if it costs a little bit more than regular ones. While buying a new walker, ask the store manager for a complete demonstration of using the walker and also read all the instructions that come along with the walker.
- Research about walkers: Before buying a walker, try to research more about the latest features on walkers. Don’t be fooled by the salesman’s choice. Before buying something, know exactly what you’re buying.