Baby walkers — devices designed to give babies mobility while they're learning to walk — can cause serious injuries.
For example, babies who use baby walkers might:
- Trip and fall over
- Roll down stairs
- Trap a finger
- Be burned, poisoned or otherwise hurt after reaching for a dangerous object
Even new baby walkers — which typically use brakes to prevent falls and are too large to fit through doorways — can still lead to serious injury. Research also suggests that use of baby walkers can actually delay when a baby begins to sit, crawl or walk unassisted, as well as slow a baby's mental and motor development.
Don't allow your baby to use a baby walker and make sure that your baby's other caregivers don't use baby walkers, either. Instead, consider using a stationary activity center, play yard or playpen. These devices will allow your baby to play safely as he or she learns to sit, crawl and stand.
Jul. 09, 2013
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- Shelov SP, et al. Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5. 5th ed. New York, N.Y.: Bantam Books; 2009:249.
- American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Injury and Poison Prevention. Injuries associated with infant walkers. Pediatrics. 2001;108:790.
- DiLillo D, et al. Maternal use of baby walkers with young children: Recent trends and possible alternatives. Injury Prevention. 2001;7:223.