High chair accidents usually occur when the child stands in the seat. Other ways children injure themselves in high chairs are by kicking it over when they push their feet against the table or other nearby furniture and by reaching for sharp or hot items on the table. They may also hurt themselves by pulling on the tablecloth.
Common injuries that occur from high chair accidents include concussions, bruises, cuts, and neck injuries. Fortunately, it’s easy to prevent high chair accidents when you implement the following guidelines for safely using high chairs:
Use the Harness System That Comes with the High Chair
Your child’s high chair should have a three-point or five-point harness system because it keeps them seated. Always use the harness to ensure your child safely sits in the chair. Problems occur when children stand in high chairs.
Tell Your Child That the High Chair is for Meal Time Only
Don’t let your child play with the high chair, because you want him/her to associate it with eating instead of playing. If he thinks it’s a toy, he will be more likely to hurt himself on it.
Clean and Disinfect the High Chair
Bruises and broken bones aren’t the only injuries you must be concerned about preventing when using a high chair. If the chair isn’t cleaned and disinfected regularly, then your child could become sick from bacteria and other germs built up on the tray or chair.
Don’t Leave Your Child Unattended in the High Chair
Accidents are more likely to happen when you’re not in the room. Never leave your child unattended in the high chair, even if you strapped him in securely.
Position the High Chair Far Enough Away from Furniture
As explained in the first paragraph, children sometimes hurt themselves in high chairs by tipping it over when they kick the table or whatever furniture is nearby. Therefore, you should always position the high chair far enough away from furniture that your baby can’t topple over from kicking.
Clean Spills on the Floor
If food or drinks spill on the floor near the high chair, even a small amount, clean it up immediately. You don’t want to forget the mess is there and slip on it while trying to retrieve your young one from the high chair. The chair could also slip and topple over as you remove the tray or fold it when there’s a spill on the floor.
How to Find a Safe High Chair for Your Child?
Features you should look for in a high chair include locking mechanisms, a wide base, and sturdiness. Locking mechanisms in high chairs prevent them from rolling away or collapsing in on themselves. When setting up the high chair, always make sure that it locked correctly. Sometimes parents think the chair locked but it didn’t. Be more cautious about buying high chairs that allow the tray or restraints to be unbuckled with one hand. If you can do it with one hand, then it will be easier for your child to free himself from the seat as well.
You can prevent your child from injuries and illnesses caused by a high chair by implementing the safety tips outlined above and buying a quality high chair. Never purchase a high chair from a garage sale, because it’s a safety hazard. Something like a high chair should be bought new, so that it’s not only in good condition but up-to-date with the latest safety technology. Also check for product recalls before and after buying a high chair to ensure your child’s safety.