It’s National Baby Safety Month and every Monday we will be sharing tips from the leaders in baby safety knowledge at JPMA. Today’s tips are all about going hands-free with baby and how to stay safe. Don’t forget to check out our past posts with JPMA, strap safety, and the carseat challenge!
Babies are meant to be held. The closeness created when babies are held in their parents’ arms is invaluable to their development. Although you may not want to put your baby down, there comes a time when you must shower, brush your teeth, and make dinner!
There are a variety of juvenile products that provide some hands-free time for parents as well as entertainment or comfort for baby. Whether you are looking for an infant seat, bouncer, or swing; it is important to do your homework before purchasing and select a product that is perfect for your baby’s age, height, weight and fits your lifestyle.
No matter what product you choose for some “baby freedom”, be sure to follow these guidelines to ensure you are using them safely:
- Babies should always be buckled into swings, infant seats, and bouncers.
- NEVER leave a baby unattended. It is important to stay in the same room as baby while using any bouncer, swing, or activity center.
- For swings, use a five-point harness whenever possible to keep baby from climbing or rolling out of the seat.
- NEVER place bouncers or infant seats on beds, sofas, or other soft surfaces. Infant seats or bouncers can roll over and suffocate a baby.
- ALWAYS secure the restraining straps and never leave a baby in the seat when straps are loose or undone.
- Baby’s movements can slide an infant seat or bouncer, so be sure not to place the infant seat near the edges of countertops, tables or other elevated surfaces.
- Never use a bouncer on an elevated surface.
- NEVER place the swing or bouncer near windows, draperies, blinds, or wall mounted decorative accessories with long cords that baby could reach.
- Follow the manufacturer’s minimum and maximum weight and age requirements.
- Look for the JPMA certification seal.
- Most importantly, although it’s an easy alternative to let your baby nap in the bouncer or swing, the safest place for a baby to sleep is in a fully functional, properly assembled, JPMA certified crib.
September is Baby Safety Month. Learn more tips on how to keep baby safe at home at babysafetymonth.org.
Amy Chezem is JPMA’s Senior Communications Manager and Baby Safety Month Program Director. Amy has managed the Baby Safety Month program for nearly two decades and helped expand the program creating one of JPMA’s largest consumer education and awareness programs to date.