First-time parents are particularly anxious about the development of their children. Each progress of the child brings more questions and worries, along with natural happiness. One such stage that parents wait anxiously is when the child would start walking independently.
Parents often want a child to start walking as early as possible. However, it is not something that can be or should be accelerated.
There are substantial individual differences between children. Most children will start walking at 12 months of age. Some may start walking early, while others as late as 18 months, and it is normal.
The wise use of walkers when your child is getting ready to take the first steps can be helpful, while excessive use can be counterproductive.
A baby walker is a simple device with wheels along with a seat. They are mainly intended to provide support when a child can still not walk confidently.
Additionally, it may have some toys to keep a child entertained. Thus, it may not only assist gain confidence in those early days but may even help develop other motor skills.
Pros of introducing baby walker to a child’s life
There are some benefits, that is why people have used them for ages. Before the industrial age, wooden walkers were common.
They were not necessarily called baby walkers and had different designs and names in various cultures. Nonetheless, all civilizations used some supportive devices to help a child start walking faster and confidently.
Here are some of the better-known benefits of walkers:
- Provide support and help stand in those early days when the legs of a child are still not strong enough. A child can not only stand but can also try to move without the help of the parents.
- Parents can remain bit carefree, at least for the time being. While the child is in the walkers, parents can get time to finish other chores. As parents can be sure that a child is safe in walkers, and there is no risk of falling.
- It provides a sense of freedom to a child and helps build confidence. It assists a child in moving freely without the help of adults. It may stimulate a child in various ways and may help strengthen the body physically.
- Builds a higher confidence level in a child; a child can do different activities and play games. A child can explore new things, learn to pick new items.
- Accelerates development, as walkers are not only about learning to walk but also about learning to grab things, playing with other toys, listening to sounds, having fun. These things play a vital role in early child development.
- Promotes emotional development, as the child becomes more engaged in activities and becomes calm. It may have long term benefits and may ultimately bring more happiness and calmness to the child and help him or her to develop a more balanced personality.
- Keeps your child safe. It is the priority of all the parents, and this is perhaps the significant advantage of baby walkers, and they keep a child secure, and there is no risk of falls.
- Save the energy of parents; after all, babysitting is quite an energy-consuming job. Parents can take a break while a child is in walkers.
- Entertainment of a child, as most walkers have additional toys to keep your child engaged. So, they can keep your child entertained.
When is the best time to buy walkers?
There is no hard and fast rule, but buying them too early may not make sense as it will still occupy some space of your home. Usually, it is a good idea to consider buying it when a child is older than four months of age, or even a little later, like between 6 to 8 months.
When buying walkers, one should ensure that it must be made of good material. It is also vital to see that it should not have toys or elements that can be readily broken by a child, as this might be dangerous.
Although most walkers are created by keeping safety in mind, it is not always the case as design errors are not rare. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of children to ensure the child’s safety.
Cons of baby walkers
There are no severe disadvantages of baby walkers. However, one should understand that anything in excess is wrong. Thus, keeping the baby limited to walkers all the time may not be a good idea. It may make baby irritated and even lazy. Every child is different, and not all may be happy with walkers, though most would like them.
For some parents, the cost may also be a prohibiting factor, though most of them are not expensive in any way. Moreover, there is a vast choice these days for every kind of budget.
It is also essential to understand that baby walker provides increased mobility too early to a child, and that may be dangerous in some cases. There is an increased risk that a child may fall from staircases due to carelessness, or may put something in the mouth.
Parents are sometimes not well prepared for such events; however, a proper understanding of risks may help avert them.
To conclude, the baby walker has several advantages, with few disadvantages. Before buying a baby, walker does proper research and buy something that is truly comfortable. Keep safety in mind while buying a walker, especially when you are low on budget.
Finally, remember that though baby walkers provide some freedom to both a child and parents, this does not mean less attention and care for a child. Though most of these things may sound small, knowing them beforehand may help.