Should I buy my baby a walker?

Abby - posted on 06/26/2010 ( 48 moms have responded )

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My son will be 10 months as of next Mon 5/7, he can crawl and can pull himself up onto the railings of his playpen. Should i buy him a walker or just wait it out? (Hoping he can walk without using a walking aid) I've heard that walkers have safety risks (tipping over) thats why I am a little worried if I buy it for my baby.

Are there any mummie's using walkers for their little one? If so have you had any problems with it?

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Kate - posted on 06/28/2010

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My little girl is 9 months & has been using her walker for a while now. She was using it before she could crawl & absolutely loves it. It's like her little bit of independence. We just make sure that there are no steps that she can fall down and just block off where she's not allowed. I don't think it's bad for them, but maybe you should consult your pediatrician for the best advice. There is a lot of conflicting advice on walkers & here in RSA, there's no law against it.

Wendy - posted on 06/28/2010

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My doc said no too, but we got her one anyway. She wanted to walk all the time, to the point where it was hurting our backs to hold her hands all the time so we got the walker. BEST THING EVER. And it doesn't tip over at all. She's taller than the walker which is good, forcing her to stand up to get anywhere. I don't think it will delay her walking cause we still hold her hands and walk her every day just so she doesn't lose that. Also, she loves being able to go around on her own and play hide and seek with us. Its awesome. We also have the bouncer but now that she has a walker she rather use that instead of jump in one place. Plus, her legs have started to thin out. We got the Baby Trend walker with the teddy bears on them. Don't be afraid you won't regret it.

Susan - posted on 07/19/2010

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LOL I tippy-toed, but my daughter walks flat-footed and uses the walker. It's all up to you, mom.

Sarah - posted on 07/14/2010

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Mum knows best! each child is different, my first little one didn't have a walker, my second did. both took their first independent step before their first birthday. My 10 mth old will not be getting a walker as he is perfectly happy getting around as he is. Also my health nurse informed me that due to walkers some children develop tight ligaments in the foot due to a tendency to walk on their tipitoes.

Karen - posted on 07/07/2010

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My 9 month old son has just started getting to where he can cruise along in his walker, before we just kept the brakes on and let him stand infront of it and play with the buttons/toys. It tipped over a few times but no major injuries reported here. I always kept a good eye on him. He zips around so fast in that thing and loves being independent. I can see how some believe it henders muscle development so I won't use it excessively but for him to understand how it feels to go from one place to another, I think that is good for him mentally. Just understanding how to move around liberally and to see that when the walker hits something, he can't move anymore, and trying to figure out how to get around the object so he can move again... this is all mental development which is a GOOD thing.

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Susan - posted on 07/12/2010

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Honey, get one if you want one. My brothers & I had one (26 - 35 yrs ago) and walked at 8 months. My daughter is 9 months and has been using the walker ever since she could kick around. She is taking her first solo steps now and is running holding on to one of my fingers! I do not believe it delays walking in the least.

Marsha - posted on 07/12/2010

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Ok, Jennifer, so you use it sparingly. I'm looking for the parents who have their babes in it a lot..or who actually think that a walker can help with learning to walk. The ones that rely on it in some way.

Jennifer Ann Saunders - posted on 07/12/2010

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Of course, we walk with him every day. We only use the walker in one room of our hosue and it is when we are cooking dinner. So, no, I don't think it has effected him walking at all. He walks with us, or along furniture.

Marsha - posted on 07/12/2010

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Here's the question i want to pose to all the parents who say they use a walker and yet don't feel it's causing a delay: have any of you tried letting your babies walk without this contraption? None of you have been able to say what your babies do without the walker, other than they crawl and pull up.

Jennifer Ann Saunders - posted on 07/12/2010

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Henry has been using one for almost two months now. We use it in the kitchen (no stairs anywhere) and it allows him to follow us around, and allows us to cook dinner. Every child is different, and I dont' know that I would go out and buy one at this point. We only use it b/c it was a loaner and he really likes it as he wants to walk all over the place. It has not delayed him in learning to walk at all.

He is a crawler and pulling himself up as well.

Good luck with whatever you choose!

Marsha - posted on 07/11/2010

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It seems to me that a good majority of this thread is against walkers. Based on everything here, Abby should be able to make a good decision for her and her baby.

Carrie - posted on 07/11/2010

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I wouldn't buy one. My daughter has one, but never uses it. She is 10 months old and she is starting to stand up in the middle of the room and walk to the couch or table or toys or whatever she is trying to get to. No walkers needed :)

Jess - posted on 07/10/2010

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I've never really seen the benefit of buying a walker. It does't teach babies about balance or co-ordination which are really the most important parts about walking.



We bought Ava the Fisher Price, Stride to Ride Lion. Its great, she pulls herself up on it and she can see her feet and off she goes. It helps her to balance without doing it for her and to move forward she has to walk. Its been great, she is now learning to stand unassisted. My niece who just turned 1 is walking all on her own now and she used the Leap Frog First Steps trolley to learn !

Marsha - posted on 07/10/2010

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i like your response to this justine. everything in moderation.
They can be good for learning independence and a few other skills while not using it as a primary aide for walking, or for some moms..the plastic baby sitter, so there's no hindrance of the baby's ability to learn to walk on his own.

[deleted account]

It amazes me that people have used walkers upstairs and put babies at risk of falling down. We have a walker (downstairs and safe) and Freddie loves it. There's no way it can tip over. He only goes in for a small amount of time (maybe 15 minutes max in a day) and not every day. It gives him independence and he's learning about turning, reversing, getting out of corners/tight spots. He also crawls like mad and pulls himself up to standing at every opportunity. Everything in moderation.

Alissia - posted on 07/10/2010

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I was put in a walker when i was a about 5 months old and i was walking on my own at 7 months, i put my son in one at 6 months and he is now walking on his own at 9 months. i don't think it delays anything and it gives them just a little bit of independence. I highly recommend using one.

[deleted account]

My 10 month old is an efficient crawler on his belly and is almost to crawling on all 4s and has started to pull up on the couch and coffee table. We didn't get a walker but he loves to play in the exersaucer (kind of like a stationary walker) and my mom bought him a push toy which encourages him to stand up and walk but he can still see his feet.

In addition to being dangerous as far as falls and tipping the other problem I have heard about is that it can cause hip problems. My son can stand up in the exersaucer and keep the weight off his hips but smaller babies can't do that. So we didn't start using the exersaucer until recently. My friend gave me one to use so we didn't have to buy one.

Samantha - posted on 07/09/2010

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I do not plan on buying a walker for my little girl she constantly pulls herself up on things and can pull herself up to a stand on her own now at 9 months I believe they will learn how to do it on there own I also got an e-mail the other day saying that doctors had looked into them and are not big fans of them and highly recommend not buying them

Melissa - posted on 07/09/2010

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I wouldn't get him a walker. A walker makes them dependant on the device and it can take longer for them to learn to walk on their own.I would just keep walking with him by holding his hands. He'll catch on!

Amanda - posted on 07/09/2010

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I did not want my son to have a walker. I know they can be unsafe, and I have heard that they can delay walking. I am not sure about the latter, but I trust the former. Anyway, his grandmother bought him one. I was not happy, but I let him use it. Two things- 1) He hates it, and never actually tried walking in it, and 2) he didn't seem to fit in it. The walker supposedly adjusted, but my son has a long torso, so his legs looked too bow-legged is all I can really think to call it. I rarely put him in it, but sometimes he will stand up to it and play with the few toys that are on it. My son does have an Exersaucer though, and he's been in that since he was about 5 months old. He loves it. He is not mobile, but he can stand, bounce, and play, and it's great when I need him up off the floor to do something.

Sam - posted on 07/08/2010

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I wouldn't use a walker, just enough open space that is safe for him to explore and he will learn when he's ready!!

Krys - posted on 07/08/2010

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I used one with my first(13yrs old) n Now I use one with my 10month old...The way mine is designed it CAN NOT tip over HOWEVER I am very careful when I put him in it...I watch him closely. I dont know if it helps or hurts with walking(Ive heard both)..I just know he luvs the independence of playing with Sissy n walking himself. He is just now pulling up n starting taking steps. If U have any worries whatsoever I would say dont buy one. Every child walks at their own leverl.My daughter was later walking and now that she 13 it doesnt matter when she walked. N the sooner they do walk the harder it is to keep up....LOL. Good Luck!! (BTW No problems with my walker but it was MY choice to use it)...

Adera - posted on 07/07/2010

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I bought my son a walker when he was younger and he didnt like it at all..recently around 8 months i bought him a walking push toy and he started walking on his own at 9 months so i can say that it was pretty helpful.

Jennifer - posted on 07/07/2010

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My 9 month old son loves his walker. I read claims that it delays him from walking, but I disgree. He has been using it for maybe 2 months now and he loves flying around the kitchen and chasing after us. It also gives him something else to do, and keeps him out of trouble when I'm doing things!

Marsha - posted on 07/07/2010

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Oh my girls had something like that too!! it was a baby piano by dad got for my oldest for her birthday. The height adjusts, like you can change the position of the table/ piano so with baby lying down they can kick at it to interact. Ot the legs can come off and they can play sitting down. Or like you said, pull themselves up and stand. That's what i meant by holding on the furniture and other things so long as it's safe to pull up and walk along on.

Karen - posted on 07/07/2010

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Not snide at all, Marsha. I have one of those turning bouncy chairs too, he loved that thing until he started crawling and learned the joy of movement!

http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp...

This is the one my son uses. He can get on and off of it whenever he wants, there is no seat to put him in. He pulls himself up on it, which helps him use those leg muscles people say aren't being used. I think this type of walker promotes walking, I can see how the kind that they sit in does not, but this kind is like a lawn mower basically so it is like a little workout for him.

Marsha - posted on 07/07/2010

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Not to be snide to anyone, but the original use for a walker, is just what it's named for. Most if not all real walkers I've seen growing up and now after having my own kids, are functioning walkers with wheels to allow the baby to move themselves around. They were used to help babies learn to walk, hence the question behind this thread. Not too many walkers have toy on them, and if there are, it's very few. Now my kids did however have this thing that LOOKED like a walker, but had no wheels and all they could do was sit in it and turn themselves around to play with the many toys attached to it. That item was short lived and given away. And here is a link to support my simple fact: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baby_walker Like I said, i'm not being snide, but if another parents asks a question they feel is important, I'd like to at least give them facts along with my own experiences.

Michelle - posted on 07/07/2010

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We have one, I think it's important to point out that this is a TOY, not an aid for learning to walk. My daughter loves running around in it. As for the tipping thing, DUH don't use it near stairs! we have her in it downstairs only. I think people make such a big deal about practically nothing. As long as your baby is supervised and not in it for an extended period of time, I think it's fine.

Marsha - posted on 07/07/2010

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Because the baby will be in a sitting position, he won't be strengthening his legs and learning to use them for actual walking. Plus, he can become dependent .Just let him use the edges of furniture, so long as they are safe, or hold him up by his little arms and help him step. That's the best way, cause he can see his feet to so he can get a visual of what he's doing. My oldest was walking unassisted by 10 months, my youngest was a bit of a late bloomer but she was at 11 months. plus walkers can be big an bulky and not always easy to get around in.

[deleted account]

I bought one, and my daughter hates it. She prefers to crawl around or cruise holding onto stuff. If your baby hates the jumperoo or anything else that holds them in place, don't waste your money! :)

Janell - posted on 07/07/2010

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My child has a walker. I use it to feed her in... and to keep her from getting into stuff when I need her not so mobile. She cruises all the time.. and has been for awhile now. I don't know that I believe all that about it delaying children. All children develop differently. There is no real scientific way to tell that it is actually a hindrance to development or if that is just the way the child is. I do agree, however, they can be unsafe, if you don't watch your child in them.

MELANI - posted on 07/07/2010

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No, definitely not. To ensure proper development of abdominal and leg muscles which are very important for walking, its very important to let your child exercise those muscles. In a walker it wont happen, because your chuld is supported and dont realy have to use those muscles. hope you can use this nto make an informed decision.

Biljana - posted on 07/06/2010

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My son has been using his walker since he was 5 m.o. Yes, he has tipped over once, but I would still recommend it, as it gives him a little bit of independance. Now that he has started cruising, my new worry is falling down. He doesn't know how to sit on his bum when he starts to lose balance and ends up falling straight on his back. Probably not the most helpful post, :) I just wanted to express the feeling that I do not believe that walkers are such great risks as to be banned.

Liza - posted on 07/05/2010

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i have both walker & this toy that help him walk..
dont really like walker for my boy but have to purchase due to some reason.. he can walk around the house on his walker but his progress on walking independently is noticeble when we play with the walker toy. my peds is against walker..

Teresa - posted on 07/05/2010

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In regards to the comments about walkers killing babies because of falling down steps...I'm sorry that this will come accross as rude but I WOULD BLAME THE PARENTS! You should keep your baby away from steps!!! My son's walker is on the lower level of the house and he plays in it a lot. Baby gates aren't the answer to it either...just plan common sense. My son's dr said not til six months old on the walker...at this rate, my son is only scooting and is about to stand so I think he will end up skip crawling to walking...who knows...I think it depends on the baby.

Michelle - posted on 07/05/2010

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DON'T DO IT!! They are NO GOOD! I was put in a baby walker when I was a baby and not only did it delay my walking, it gave me a lack of coordination skills which (luckily) ballet gave back to me (well taught me better). When a baby is learning how to walk, it is a building block from crawling. They learn to put one foot in front of the other with the right pressure to get the right balance so they (eventually) don't fall over. Yes they will fall at first, but that is part of the learning experience. If they don't have that fall they will build a false sense of balance and prevent the proper knowledge needed to walk properly. When they fall, it will probably hurt, but pick them up and give them a cuddle and let them try again.

Some of the other mothers on here have said they use the walker to put them in so they don't have to worry about them (to do other tasks). That's fine - I have a toy where he sits in it (like the walker) and the toys are around him and he bounces in it (ie it doesn't actually "walk") - but that's what I treat it as ... a toy ... which I would never leave him in for longer than 20 minutes (can stuff up their foot for walking - they try and walk on their toes or something?) so if you want a walker ... treat it like a toy which can be dangerous (like other toys), not a useful tool, because in the long run ... it could possibly make your child a gumby at sports (ok ... that's personal opinion ... but I can make a joke of how gumby I was until I took up dancing).

Don't want to offend other Mum's if they use the walker ... but take my post into consideration.

Magda - posted on 07/04/2010

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I had the same question and concerns as many of you have stated. My babe is walking around with us holding his hands. However on most days, he is in the care of a "grandma" that doesn't walk with him, due to the strain on her back.... should we go ahead and get one just so he has more movement, or should we just devote the couple of hours we have with him to walking with us?

[deleted account]

Also it depends on the type of walker, the ones that are illegal are the ones you sit you baby in. In Canada it is still legal to have the walkers they just hold onto and push. They can still see their feet, and I dont see how a walker would delay walking when it helps teach them balance. But like I said before, its personal preference! And some walkers were made illegal because of injury, but I think that was just parents not watching their kids close enough. Put a baby gate at your stairs and anywhere you dont want your baby to go!

[deleted account]

I recently got my 9 month old a walker, so far she just likes the decorations on it, lol. But when I did help her stand up with it she moved forward with it a little, and then fell on her bum. Of course the walker tipped over because she was holding it, she didnt seem to mind though. Honestly I think its personel preference. If your concerned about injury, dont risk it or help them when they are using it. Completley up to you!

Amber - posted on 07/04/2010

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My pediatrician says not to use a walker because of the injuries that have been reported. He has seen multiple head injuries from walkers tipping. My dughter was born on the 7th of September and she isn't even really crawling yet. I figure she will walk and crawl when she is ready. My doctor also says that children aren't delayed unless they have not crawled or attempted to crawl at 13 months. I just personally don't feel comfortable with walker.

Myra - posted on 07/03/2010

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Sounds like your baby is doing awesome!!! I wouldn't recommend a walker. It is fact that it delays them. Babies need to see their feet.. So let him cruise on the sofas (that is what my baby does) and he will be walking in no time!!

Laurie - posted on 07/03/2010

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As August says - they are outlawed in Canada and have been for a very long time. Too many babies were getting killed falling down stairs and breaking their necks. If you son is pulling up already he will be walking in a matter of weeks and then won't want a walker anyway. I would tend to bypass it as an unnecessary expense. Instead, encourage cruising along the furniture and independent walking will happen very quickly. With my son he took his first steps going from cruising along the couch to cruising along the table - which were about one or two steps apart for him. Once that started he was walking independently within a week or so. Then watch out as he will get into absolutely everything in the blink of an eye! And you will miss when he only crawled...

Christine - posted on 07/02/2010

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My son loves his walker! I have had no problems at all with it. He kinda cruises along the furniture also so I don't think it is delaying his walking. He just enjoys the independence that his walker gives him.

Aicha - posted on 06/29/2010

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skip the walker soon enough he will be walking my daughter never used a walker and she walks while holding onto things

Andrea - posted on 06/28/2010

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Most pediatrician don't recommend them any more. Mine actually advise against that research do safety issue.

I used them for my first 2 kids. At the last 2 I just didnt see the point of buying one since I prefer the saucers.

Andrea - posted on 06/28/2010

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It delays walking so I wont plus at this stage he'll be walking before you know it.

[deleted account]

Our dr told us not to buy one because they "delay" walking. Canada has them outlawed bc of the tipping over and delay. I would wait. It's a little late to start him!

[deleted account]

Walkers do not necessarily "help" your kids learn to walk...it sounds like he is doing it all on his own! We were given a walker w/our 1st born and kept everything from then for #2, his walker is mostly used for when he wants to play but needs somewhere safe to go where I won't necessarily worry about him getting into stuff. We do not have stairs in my house and therefore has no real tipping risk...my current "problem" is that my almost 4 yr old still gets in the walker and will at times get mad when the baby gets in his "car"? ...

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