As a parent, your one big job will be keeping your kid safe. Of course, you can’t wrap them in bubble wrap (because, suffocation), lock them in a padded room (because, neglect), or raise them via a sentient robot maid who is a better parent than you (because, dystopia).
So what does a worried parent do to make the future rosy without an actual robot named Rosie? You can start by making sure the stuff you bring into your house wasn’t inadvertently designed to harm your kid. Here’s how:
Know Your History
There are a few baby things things you can still find out there in the world that have been known to be problematic. They continue to be sold despite warnings against their use. Because people just love buying crap for babies.
Take baby walkers, for instance. No seriously, take them and throw them in a fire someplace. First of all, they don’t actually encourage your baby to walk. Second of all they are downright dangerous, particularly when stairs or even small ledges are involved. And there’s plenty more products where that comes from. Get educated.
Careful With The Hand-Me Downs
There are things you totally want to take from your sister who has been popping out kids since she turned 22. Those include clothes, simple infant toys, and anything else that doesn’t have complicated moving parts or require significant assembly.
Couple reasons for this: You’ve seen your brother-in-law drink beers. He was probably doing that while he assembled or disassembled that bassinet. There might be a bolt or two missing. Missing parts could be a safety concern. Also, you never know if that sweet crib your nephew partied in like it was 1999 (because it was) has been recalled over the last decade and a half. Which will bring you to the next bit …
Do Your Recall Research
Start with the website Kids In Danger, which tracks defective products. When possible, buy stuff that’s been approved by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association. Finally, keep tabs on what you’ve bought by checking into the Consumer Product Safety Commission. What you put out in legwork just might keep your kid’s legs from being severed, broken or mutilated. .
Don’t Believe Everything You Hear
“My baby had crib bumpers and didn’t once suffocate to death,” says your wife’s pal Barbara. And while it’s commendable for Barbara that doesn’t mean that states like Maryland were wrong for banning their sale due to safety concerns.
Making decisions via circumstantial evidence is no way to go through life, bro. Stick to valid sources and just put that bubble-wrap down already.