When I first started doing doing research on baby products for things like our registry, I was thinking about things that we needed. For example, I thought about the crib, changing table, clothes, and things for Nora to play with. My thought first went to the baby walker. I remember playing with my little sister, Sarah, in one, and pushing her around everywhere. I could remember how much fun she had, and I thought that Nora should have the same. However, when I started researching which one was the best, I came across some disturbing information.

I have read that even though adults are watching children in these things, most injuries in baby walkers happen while the caregiver is watching the child. That happens because the adult just does not have the ability to act quick enough. Some of the things that have happened while parents are watching are: falling down the stairs, grabbings hot or heavy items and pulling it over on themselves, or little hands grabbing something poisonous and putting it their mouths. Children are very curious and when they can move and reach higher than they are used to, they are going to explore.

In 1997 safety standards were put in place for walkers. They are now made wider to not fit through doorways or they come with brakes to stop them at the edge or stairs, however, children are still getting injured.

Another issue walkers can cause is development delays. Some parents thing that the walkers will help children learn to walk quicker, however, this is untrue. Walkers will not teach children how to balance themselves correctly to learn to walk. Children will also not learn crawling, creeping, and scooting. Also, the child will not be able to pull up like they need to.

Some countries have even taken steeps to outlaw walkers, do to the dangers and developmental delays. Like in Canada where if you just have one in your home you can be fined $100,000 or face up to 6 months in jail. The American Academy of Pediatrics is calling for a ban on the manufacture and sale of baby walkers with wheels.

So you might ask yourself what you can do to help your child. I think that HealthyChildren.org says it best. They say, “Throw out your baby walkers! Also, be sure that there are no walkers wherever your child is being cared for, such as child care centers or in someone else’s home.” They also recommend some safer alternatives such as stationary activity centers, play yards/play pins, or even high chairs.

Hope this information I have found proves helpful. If you want to read some of the websites they are listed below.
http://consults.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/02/22/the-dangers-of-baby-walkers/
http://www.drgreene.com/qa/baby-walkers
HealthyChildren.org
http://www.drspock.com/faq/0,1511,1654,00.html
http://www.seattlechildrens.org/kids-health/page.aspx?id=62446

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