When your baby is between 5 and 15 months and can’t walk, you will definitely think about buying him/her a walker. More than half of all babies at this age use walkers; babies usually love them and parents love that their baby can stay entertained for hours and away from some dangers. But is that always true? Is this accessory really good for babies? Unfortunately, it’s not always as good as you suppose!
First, if you think that a walker will let your baby learn walking faster, you are very wrong, because some studies show that walkers can even delay the development of the upper legs and hip muscles, the fact that delays your baby’s power to walk unassisted.
Second, baby walkers may be sometimes dangerous because they give your baby extra speed, extra height, and access to many hazards that were previously out-of-reach, such as heaters, ovens, candles, cups of hot drinks, perfumes…
You may feel sometimes that if your baby is in his/her walker, you can leave him/her unwatched for some short periods, but it is totally the contrary: extra care is crucial when your baby is in a walker! So, if you decide anyway to buy a walker for your baby, you should know the following:
Safety comes first, so choose a walker that has a wheelbase longer and wider than the frame: this will ensure stability.
When you’re buying the walker, make sure that your baby’s feet can easily touch the ground on the seat’s lowest setting.
Make sure that the toys on the walker are firmly attached and don’t have small parts that your baby can remove and put in his/her mouth.
Use the walker only in a room that doesn’t have access to stairs leading down, and clear all objects off the tables and all other places that your baby will be able to reach.
Don’t use the walker once your baby can walk unassisted.
Always keep your child within view!