February 2013 Moms

Does everyone have baby seats

OK, we are visiting the US from Europe where our peds are pretty obsessive about the importance of babies lying flat on their backs, limiting time in carseats and bouncy seats (I swear my ped said no more than 15 minutes, but I told her that was not going to happen) and bumbos and walkers are considered bad for development. 

I don't take everything 100% to heart (if my kid falls asleep in a carseat, I don't wake him up), but he does, even at 5 months spend most of his time lying on his back or stomach on the floor on a blanket.

In the states all of our friends have offered us exersaucers, walkers and other gadgets that come with a ton of flashy things and noise makers. I've turned them all down not so much because of development concerns, but because I find them noisy and I don't want my kid to get too used to all the gadgets that we don't have at home (Our bouncy seat has nothing that lights up or  makes noise) 

 

My question: Why is this stuff so common here in the US? Is it because it is considered good to teach your kids about the lighting stuff? Is it to have a place to put your kid down (this is the main appeal factor for me), have you been advised by doctors not to use it?  

I'm not judging, I realize that American kids and Scandinavian kids tend to figure out how to sit and stand with and without the stuff. Just curious.

LO born Feb 2010 m/mc 03.25.12 @ 11 weeks measured 8 Pgal/Pal always welcome

Re: Does everyone have baby seats

  • kitevkitev
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    I think it mainly has to do with marketing. All these baby commercials make you feel like these are major learning tools and why not get your baby started early. Give him a head start on the other kids.
    I'm like you though. Baby spends most of her time on the floor but mainly because I can't deal with all the noise noise noise. And I hate being inundated with all this cheapo plastic.

    Eta: I wasn't advised by the doc to use or not use swings and bouncers. I've gotten most of my info from the ladies on here and have done my own research from there.
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  • I use the bouncer because it makes it harder for my toddler to step on the baby!

     

    We have a jumperoo that makes the baby happier than anything else on earth so I use that to entertain her and give me a few minutes of peace.

     

    • I've never been told by a doc not to use them, but have found that on my own through research.
    • Americans like bright, noisy things maybe... :)
    • The kid loves it!!
    • A place to set them
    • Our American society seems to think the baby will get "bored" on the floor
    • Mine spends a lot of time on the floor too though so he can learn to crawl
    • I agree with the pp marketing statement
    • ETA:  I refuse to buy toys that need batteries!  I hate them! Sometimes they are gifted to us though.

     

     

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  • SagenSagen
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    My exercauser isn't noisy, but is bright. It is harder to find not so bright colored things that aren't super expensive. I like the exercauser because it is fun for him, though I do not let him stay in there for more than a few minutes a day. I think prolonged use is not good, but I have heard limited use is ok. ITA with PP about anything with batteries, not a fan of noisy toys, bright is just fine :)
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  • We own an exersaucer so I have somewhere to put him while I shower.  Literally.  I hold or wear him or he plays on the floor on his play mat the rest of the day.  But when I am showering I need him in the bathroom where he can see me, and he wants to be upright.  So...exersaucer.  
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  • I was told by an ex pediatrician to kit use bouncy chairs and jumperoos. I didn't listen to her reasons. She already made me angry and I had decided we weren't coming back.

    Ds really doesn't need the lights and noise. I never turn them on his bouncer or the swing. And I don't think HD cares either waywith the jumperoo.
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  • I don't know.  My SIL is from Italy (she lives here but her entire family is still in Europe) and I have seen many FB photos of her family's kids in bouncers, exersaucers and similar equipment.  Just as bright as in the US.
  • I've never had a doctor give input either way on those things. They mention that the baby needs to be in a carseat in the car and need to sleep on their back, not their tummy.

    I ended up getting a jumparoo as a hand-me-down from my cousin and have used it with the kids a bit. The girls liked it a bit and used it a bit, my son loves it. I don't use it a ton, but sometimes he's bored with lying on the floor and wants to either be held or in the jumparoo. I hold him and play with him a lot, but if I need to use the bathroom or get food for myself or his sisters and he doesn't want the floor I'll put him in the jumparoo for a bit. We've never put the batteries in to make it light up or make noise, though, because I don't care for electronic toys at all (mostly I find them loud and annoying). He just sits up and watches us, plays with a rattle built on it, reaches for the bird and frog that dangle on it. I don't know for sure whether it helps with his development at all, but he enjoys playing in it and it gives me a chance to do what needs to be done either for his sisters or around the house.

    I have read that anything where a baby is dangling from their crotch is bad for hip development, so I do limit his time in it. I probably would never have gone out and bought one, but since it was free I took it.

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  • Thanks for all of your answers. We have gotten offers from several friends about borrowing one while we are here and I don't want to be all 'I thought they were bad...'

    that said, we live in Scandinavia, and anything not made of wood or sold at ikea is highly suspect. We bought a used baby swing and no one could figure out why.  Personally I have gotten used to not having too many big baby items take up space, but I find it fascinating sometimes the different advice you get in different countries, so was curious what docs said.

    also we love our ped and agree with her on the major things and she is very understanding, so I'm ok with disagreeing now and then.

    I don't hate grammar, my iPad does... 

    LO born Feb 2010 m/mc 03.25.12 @ 11 weeks measured 8 Pgal/Pal always welcome
  • I chalk it up to Keeping up with the Jones's.... No it's not all needed, but it's helpful for the moms. We nickname the exersaucer, a circle of neglect.  We've done our best to limit the amount of these items that we have in our house, but will use when we theirs when visiting friends and family.
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  • I agree with you that so much baby "stuff" seems excessive and unnecessary! Then again, I (sanctimoniously) did without so much of the stuff when I had my first.  This time around I have a baby swing, and a bumbo seat, both of which were given to me by a friend.  As it turns out, I LOVE having both! It is great having the swing available as another place to put the baby and keep him safe from doggies and my daughter, while freeing up my hands to do other things now that it is too hot for the Moby.  I rarely use the Bumbo, but like it when we want to eat.  My Bumbo has the tray attachment and while we aren't starting him on any real foods or solids yet, I'll set him in the Bumbo and give him like a dime sized taste of applesauce or something similarly soft, for him to push it around on the tray.

    But I think that a huge part of the baby industry is the marketing pushed down on us here.

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  • The pedi we had before we moved told us not to use them because studies show that kids learn to walk earlier with out them.  We didn't use them and my DD1 didn't walk until 15 months, lol.  We don't have a jumperoo or exersaucer or anything like that, but I do use a bouncer seat, like PP said mostly to keep my toddler from trampling the baby.  I try to limit her time in it.  I try to get her to spend most of her awake time on her tummy.

    Also, I don't like flashy toys.  I buy the simple stuff, no batteries required.  But the flashy stuff still gets given to as a gifts.

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  • Germans also say that your child shouldn't sit until they can get in that position by themselves.When I was on the preemie board with DD1, there were several US moms talking about physical therapy for their preemies, and having them practice sitting is one way to strengthen their core. So... there's two different views for you. I asked my midwife, and she said that I shouldn't stress about it. As long as they aren't spending too long in the things, it's nbd.

    My mom got us a Bumbo with DD1. She hated it. DD2 likes it a lot. I put her in there maybe once every 2-3 days, and she sits up on my lap. She likes to be upright and I don't want to carry her all the time, so I'm helping her to sit up. If she's anything like DD1, she won't roll over intentionally or crawl for quite a while yet, and it's not until they're at least rolling over and getting into crawling position that they can get into a sitting position on their own.

    My bouncer is also plain, but I use it quite a bit. When I'm in the kitchen cooking bc the floor is too cold to have her lie on it (even on a blanket, IMO), when DD1 and I are out on the balcony and I want DD2 with us, etc. I have it in a very reclined position so she's almost lying flat, though.


    BFP1: DD1 born April 2011 at 34w1d via unplanned c/s due to HELLP, DVT 1 week PP
    BFP2: 3/18/12, blighted ovum, natural m/c @ 7w4d
    BFP3: DD2 born Feb 2013 at 38w4d via unplanned RCS due to uterine dehiscence

  • We have a ton of baby gear. Mostly because other moms I knew told me to put these things on my registry. I did and people got them for me as gifts!

    Do I think all this stuff is necessary? No, but I like that I have options. It's kind of funny though that DS preferred the cheapie hand me down bouncer with zero frills hands down to the Snugabunny swing and currently his favorite thing to do is be on his tummy on a yoga mat. We do have an exersaucer which is bright, and loud. He goes in it a couple times a day for a short duration. I'm really glad I have it because he loves to stand and I can only play "stand on my lap" for so long - he's heavy! Like PP said - he loves to be upright so it's nice to have something to stick him in where he can be that way for a bit!  

    This is a really interesting thread. I like hearing about how things vary culture to culture.  

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  • image pitterpatter129:
    I've never been told by a doc not to use them, but have found that on my own through research. Americans like bright, noisy things maybe... : The kid loves it!!A place to set themOurnbsp;American society seems to think the baby will get "bored" on the floorMine spends a lot of time on the floor too though so he can learn to crawlI agree with the pp marketing statementETA:nbsp; I refuse to buy toys that need batteries!nbsp; I hate them! Sometimes they are gifted to us though.nbsp;nbsp;


    And it comes down to covenience. If it makes baby happy it must be good right? Not so much. I am a pediatric physical therapist. I recommend no more than 30 min a day in any device. Floor time and one on one play is best. Jumperoo/exersaucers put babies hips in an unnatural position not conducive to development. I think most people use these devices in moderation so it is fine. But it is the people that use them to parent that makes practitioners nervous and concerned about there use.
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    adamsabigail14
  • I've never had anyone tell me that those items are bad. But DH and I are super minimalist and we didn't want any extra bells and whistles (we too have a plain bouncer) Now that DD is here sometimes I wish that I had those things to distract her so I could get more done but I love that we spend so much time together and that I have to be inventive in including her in what I do.

    I seriously wish that there was something to make holding her in a standing position easier. I get so tired helping her to play at standing on the floor! But even the AAP recommends against walkers :(

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  • image jlweasner:
    image pitterpatter129:
    I've never been told by a doc not to use them, but have found that on my own through research. Americans like bright, noisy things maybe... : The kid loves it!!A place to set themOurnbsp;American society seems to think the baby will get "bored" on the floorMine spends a lot of time on the floor too though so he can learn to crawlI agree with the pp marketing statementETA:nbsp; I refuse to buy toys that need batteries!nbsp; I hate them! Sometimes they are gifted to us though.nbsp;nbsp;
    And it comes down to covenience. If it makes baby happy it must be good right? Not so much. I am a pediatric physical therapist. I recommend no more than 30 min a day in any device. Floor time and one on one play is best. Jumperoo/exersaucers put babies hips in an unnatural position not conducive to development. I think most people use these devices in moderation so it is fine. But it is the people that use them to parent that makes practitioners nervous and concerned about there use.

    Cool!

    What do you say about bouncers? Should they be pretty much fully reclined, or is slightly upright ok?

    And what about bumbos?


    BFP1: DD1 born April 2011 at 34w1d via unplanned c/s due to HELLP, DVT 1 week PP
    BFP2: 3/18/12, blighted ovum, natural m/c @ 7w4d
    BFP3: DD2 born Feb 2013 at 38w4d via unplanned RCS due to uterine dehiscence

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