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put baby in walker

Mom’s Question:

I put my baby is a walker, but am now hesitating. Is it healthy or not for my 5-month-old baby to sit and run around in her walker??? She really loves it and since she is quite a wild kid it helps to keep her occupied. But I heard that walkers can be bad for babies. Will she get hurt in any way by running around in it?


Baby Helpline:

Baby Walkers – Harmful Or Not

I can totally relate to having a wild baby who is really happy about running around in her walker. So in your case, I bet at least the baby walker is good for your sanity.

However, your question was about whether it is safe for your baby to spend time in her walker and the answer to that, in general, is actually no. Baby walkers are criticized over and over again for being unsafe. Some studies have found that around 20% of children using baby walker had incidences leading to injuries related to the walkers. That’s a pretty high share! The most common injuries are head-related and include bruising, epistaxis, cut lip, tooth damage, cut tongue, skin abrasions, and skull fracture.

According to a study from 2006, the most common reasons for the accidents are: being pushed by someone, 37%; baby walker mechanical defect, 36%; tripping, 22%.

Some researchers go so far as to suggest a sales ban on walkers due to the high risk of injuries.

Nevertheless, it is a fact that a lot of families use them. They are very appreciated by the babies and often by parents too.

If your daughter spends a limited amount of time each day in the baby walker in a safe way, I don’t think you should worry.

It won’t make her walk faster or anything like that (rather the opposite), but it won’t harm her either as long as you really prevent accidents. Watch out for stairs, pools, anything that she can pull down, reach and try to eat, and so on. Also, make sure she is not left alone in a room while in the walker. If she has older siblings, they need to understand that they cannot push the baby around even if they make the baby happy.

In addition, you should use more time engaging her in games with you rather than scooting around alone in the walker. Have a look at the game ideas for 5-month-old babies in this article.

Baby walkers are not ideal, but for active babies, they are great entertainment, no one can argue with that.

You can read about another baby in a walker in this forum thread.

Hope this helps,

Paula

So, moms, what’s your view on baby walkers? Do you use them? Add your comments below or return to Baby Development Q&A.

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    I guess I’m old fashioned but I put my kids both in a walker at 2 months old…as soon as they are holding their head up… I had one that moves around the room. I put a blanket or stuff around them to fill up the hold so they wouldn’t flop around. They both were walking by 9 months old.

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