Whether feeding your baby is trying for you or not, mealtime is usually adventurous when you've got a little one. When I was purchasing my first highchair I asked so many friends what is important to them and what they like and dislike about their highchairs
. Turns out, not surprisingly, the primary concern is safety. From checking out a large variety of products I came to realize that most high chairs are constructed safely and it’s really a matter of preference.
But, I've also found out that mealtime safety does not stop by the manufacturer. It goes way beyond that into my personal care of my children. I've done extensive research trying to learn as much as I could so that I would know that I was doing my part in keeping my baby safe.
Here are some of the tips that I've learned and some basic guidelines that my friends and I have compiled:
- Your baby is ready to start using a highchair when your baby is starting to lean forward in the infant seat and you are afraid he/she will tip it over
- Make sure your highchair is sturdy and has a base that is wider than the top of the chair for extra stability.
- Never let your baby stand up in the highchair adding “top weight” to the chair and increasing the chance of it tipping over.
- Do not let other children climb on and/or in the highchair.
- If the highchair is foldable, make sure that it is fully locked into place before placing your child in the chair.
- Always stay in the same room as your baby when he/she is eating and/or in a highchair. It only takes a quick moment for little people to get into mischief.
- Be sure to have your baby sit at all times while in a highchair. Use the high chair safety straps and crotch strap to ensure that the baby stays sitting. This protects the child from falling overboard and helps prevent the chair from tipping over.
- Make certain that the seat of the chair is not slippery. That can cause babies to slide down. Place bath stickers or a bath mat on the seat. This can help prevent serious injuries.
- Check to be sure that your baby’s fingers are out of the way before placing the tray on the highchair. Be sure that the tray is securely locked into place. Additionally, make sure that the tray and buckle are difficult enough that a child can’t open them, but that it is easy for an adult to.
- Place the highchair at a safe distance from counters, tables and ovens. This is to prevent the child from reaching objects that are potentially dangerous (or part of your meal) and also to prevent them from gripping onto such a surface causing the chair to tip over.
- If you are using a chair that slips onto the edge of a table (travel high chair) secure it well. Also be sure that the table has enough weight to counterbalance the pressure of the baby sitting on the edge.
- Make sure to know CPR and first aid. At all times have emergency numbers and a phone within easy reach. Click here for a useful chart.
Do you have any safety tips of your own that you can share with us?