Choosing the Right Products for Your Baby
Welcoming a new member into your family is one of the most exciting moments and one of the purest joys that you will ever experience.
Welcoming a new member into your family is one of the most exciting moments, and one of the purest joys that you will ever experience. But, as any parent will tell you, it is also an incredibly stressful experience!
Babies are very demanding people (it’s not their fault—it’s just science—but it’s still a pain!). They’re also frighteningly delicate, and as many a harried parent has noticed, seemingly imbued with a death wish. Babies don’t know what to be careful about yet, and our intrepid little ones seem to have a knack for seeking out nasty things to put in their mouths, electrical sockets to try to “play” with, and stairs or ledges to hop off of. Parents have to keep an eye on their kids and “baby-proof” the house to keep their little Evel Knievels from pulling any wild stunts. And baby-proofing is just one of the many chores and expenses that parents have to take care of in order to protect their babies.
And, just to make everything a little extra stressful, not all baby-related products are created equal. Some are safer than others, and nobody wants to be the unlucky parent who picks a product that they shouldn’t have. So how can you choose? We’re here to help!
The key to choosing the right car seat for your child is to know how different car seats work for different age groups. A newborn baby should get a rear-facing car seat until around age two. From two years on, a forward-facing car seat is the right move—unless your child is more than 40 pounds, in which case it’s time to graduate to a booster seat (which makes the regular seat belt fit). Finally, once your kid reaches four feet, nine inches tall, it’s time to ditch these seats altogether.
What about individual products, though? Well, that’s a simple matter of comparing reviews. Happily, it’s easier than ever to find the best car seats for babies and toddlers: just use a review aggregation site like bestcarseathub.com.
Cribs and Crib Accessories
A sturdy crib is an essential investment for any new or soon-to-be parent. Choosing a reliable one isn’t too tough: just check out reviews and trust name-brand products. But what about the many accessories you can get for cribs: the blankets, sleep positioners, crib tents, and more?
There’s a short and easy answer: don’t buy these things at all! Products like these can be dangerous. Babies should sleep on the crib mattress without anything nearby—no blankets, no stuffed animals, no crib bumpers, and so on. Anything near your child when he or she sleeps is a potential suffocation hazard, and while the worst outcome may seem unlikely (and, happily, generally is), there’s no sense in taking bad risks.
Walking and Standing Aids
Babies start out being unable to even crawl, and watching your child learn to walk is one of life’s greatest joys. It seems like a sensible thing to help your kid along by investing in a walker, a baby-bounder, or another similar product. And, sometimes, it is! You just need to make absolutely sure that you’re buying safe products.
Kids have a bad habit of rolling walkers down stairs and into other dangerous situations. Tens of thousands of babies hurt themselves every year pulling stunts like this, and a couple thousand end up in the emergency room. Given that fact, you’ll probably want to steer clear of walkers—or at least use baby gates to set up a very limited area for the roll-around fun. Focus on safe products that keep your baby within a limited range, or that have particularly stable bases too wide to fit down stairwells and into other dangerous spots (which, again, should be blocked off with baby gates anyway).
Parents can’t do anything more than their best to try to pick safe products. The good news is that taking some basic steps, like reading reviews, can go a long way toward protecting your child!