A stroller is a must-have item for any parent that intends to remain mobile after having their bundle of joy. Strollers come in handy when you need to leave your home, whether it’s going to the store for groceries or taking a walk around your neighborhood.
The concern that every parent has to take into consideration is whether your baby is comfortable and safe while being pushed around in a stroller. Read on for tips on how you can ensure that your baby is safe and secure in these convenient baby carriers.
1. Avoid overloading
An unsteady stroller that is prone to tipping could easily cause an accident or injury. Look for a wide, solid base, and also try to get a feel of the stroller handles by testing it out in the store before making a purchase. Even if the stroller turns out to be stable, avoid overloading the handlebars with heavy shopping bags as it could cause it to topple.
2. Check the pushchair brakes
Make sure that the stroller’s brakes are easy to apply and effective at bringing it to a halt. You want to avoid strollers that have brakes that are hard to access, or not clearly labeled, or are too easy to forget to leave on.
3. Check the reclining seat
If you have a newborn baby, you want to look for a stroller that can recline to 150 degrees or more, to allow him/her to lie in a flat position when you’re on the move. Not all strollers can do this, which makes them unsuitable for use for the first few months when your little one is unable to sit up on his/her own.
If you are using a travel-system stroller that features a baby car seat on top, it is worth mentioning that babies shouldn't be left in their car seats for more than two hours. This is because it can result in a strain in your little one's spine and subsequently restrict airflow to their little lungs, especially if their head flops forwards.
This all-in-one stroller comes with 3 different modes that make it suitable for use right from when your little one is born to when they are three years old.
4. Know the maximum weight the stroller can hold
Strollers have a maximum weight that they can comfortably accommodate, both for the seat and the basket underneath it. It is recommended that you find out what these limits are before taking the stroller out for a spin with your baby and extra baggage in it.
Overloading will inevitably result in instability, plus it can also cause your stroller to break. Look for a specific weight limit in the stroller’s instruction manual before putting it to use.
5. Be careful with the locking and folding devices
Take extra caution when folding your stroller or making any adjustments to it, and also ensure that your little one is at a distance as you do this. One of the most frequently reported stroller-related injuries when baby fingers get caught in folding hinges or locking mechanisms. Ensure that you confirm if you can easily fold and unfold the stroller, as well as lock it into place.
6. Make use of the five-point harness
A majority of strollers feature a built-in five-point harness seatbelt. This mechanism restrains your baby between the legs, over the shoulders, and across the waist. You must always use a well-fitting harness every time you have your little one in the pushchair to keep them from wriggling out, getting tangled, or even falling out.
7. Inspect the wheels
You must frequently inspect the stroller's wheels to ensure that they are not wobbly and unsteady. This stroller features robust durable wheels that allow for a smooth ride in varying terrains.
8. Be careful with the accessories that you use with the stroller
There are a wide variety of buggy accessories on the market, and while some serve a useful function (a buggy board or a cup holder, for instance), others can pose a safety risk (a faux-fur hood trim or pram charms, for example)
Before attaching any accessories to your baby’s stroller, do your research to ensure that you are not adding anything with small parts that your child can easily grab, as they can turn out to be a choking hazard.
9. Avoid overheating when in the sun
You may choose to cover your stroller with a piece of cloth to protect your little one from harmful sun rays, but this can cause your child to overheat and subsequently increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Avoid the direct sun whenever possible – your stroller might feature a sun canopy, but it can still heat up inside, and it's metal and plastic parts could potentially burn you or your little one.
10. Be aware of strollers that have been recalled due to safety concerns
Certain stroller models from big brands such as Stokke and Mamas & Papas have been recalled in the past due to concerns that were raised regarding safety. It is important that you research extensively to stay up to date with safety notices and stroller recalls to avoid buying a potentially faulty baby carrier.
11. Check for a safety label
All strollers should carry a safety label to confirm that it meets the mandatory safety standards. Safety labels typically vary depending on the country in which you purchase a stroller.
12. Always keep an eye on the stroller
You should never leave your stroller unattended when your little one is inside. This is because it can get too hot, roll away, or your baby could slip out and end up trapped. To avoid this scenario, always keep a close eye on it.
Having adequate information when it comes to stroller safety is vital to avoid accidents and injuries while out with your little one. Choose a stable frame, smooth steering, wide base, and optimal brakes. Never overload the stroller, and always keep your eye on it when your baby is inside. You will enjoy taking your baby out and about as they take in the world around them from their stroller. And, the best part is that you can be self-assured that they’ll be safe.