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How to Choose a Baby Bouncer

Don't you wish there was a spot apart from the baby crib, where you could place your child safely for some time? Baby bouncers are the perfect answer to your woes. In this article, we provide some simple tips that will help you buy the perfect bouncer for your child.
Tip to choose a baby bouncer
Safety Tip
Always place the bouncer on the floor, well away from hazards like cords and heaters.
Baby bouncers that hold the baby and provide gentle bounce motion are the perfect baby gear for soothing and calming cranky babies. Some children like to fall asleep in these vibrating, swinging chairs. A baby bouncer is a really handy accessory for moms who are unsure where to put their newborn when they are taking a shower or grabbing a bite. The rounded bouncer seat is covered with soft, removable pads that keeps the baby comfortable as he/she rests in different reclining positions. The bouncer seat can rock back and forth or side to side. It can also be set to a fixed position to make it a stationery seat for the baby. Some of these bouncers have great features like a removable toy bar, soothing sounds and melodies, and calming vibrations.

There is a huge variety of baby bouncer types, sizes, and designs in the market, and as a parent, you can have a tough time choosing the best one for your child. Moreover, there is always this confusion about whether to choose a baby bouncer or a swing as both baby gears provide a calming and entertaining environment for the baby. Here are some tips from Buzzle, that will help you make your choice easily.

Points to Consider When Buying a Baby Bouncer

Types of Baby Bouncer

Door Bouncers
Door Baby Bouncers
Seated Bouncers
Seated Bouncers

We tend to associate bouncers with seated bouncers only. However, door baby bouncers are quite popular as well. These bouncers are basically, seats and padded saddles on springs that are attached to door frames. They also have a robust strap that allows your little one to bounce away to his/her heart's content. Bright Starts Bouncin' Around Door Jumper and Tippitoes Doorway Door Bouncer are some popular door bouncers for children in the market.

Seated bouncers are quite popular as they allow younger babies to create a rocking motion. These bouncers have a lightweight metal frame, covered with a pad, that conforms to a baby's shape. As the baby moves, the bouncers spring and bounce back and forth. There are many different types of seated bouncers. From basic framed bouncers that move back and forth using the baby's weight and have features such as reclining positions, detachable plush toys and removable toy bar, to battery-operated bouncers with consistent rocking motion to calm and relax the child. Of course, there are modern (extremely expensive) bouncers that let you plug-in your MP3 player, and have an LCD as well. Of course, you need to consider the style of the bouncer as well. Most bouncers are brightly colored with cartoon characters and animal prints. However, there are several brands that provide modern baby bouncers in soothing and stylish colors as well.

Features


Frame and Sturdiness
The first thing that you need to check is a bouncer with a sturdy frame. The frame should have a wide, stable base that does not tip over when you give it a push. Ideally, the bouncer should have rubber pads or other non-skid material on the base to keep the bouncer from slipping. Watch out for bouncers that have an extremely stiff frame, and are thus, unable to bounce at all. Press on the seat frame to check how much pressure is required to make it bounce.

Size and Portability
The bouncer should be lightweight and portable so that you can easily carry it from one room to another. Some bouncers can be folded, and are great for storage and travel. It is important to note that you should never keep the baby strapped in a bouncer as you move it from one room to another.

Safety Features
A baby bouncer should necessarily have safety features like safety straps. Most bouncers have three-point harnesses to keep the baby in place. Parents should be careful about checking the latest recalls page to ensure that the model you are buying is not recalled. Also, check for the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) seal that conforms that the bouncer meets all the safety standards.

Seat Positioning
Most bouncers have a two- or three-position recline option to allow a more flatter recline for newborn babies, and an upright position for toddlers. If the bouncer has just one basic position, that is fine, unless it is too upright for the baby.

Comfort
The seat should be really comfortable for the baby. The seat padding in bouncers varies from thin to extra thick padding with inserts for newborns. The fabric of the seat should be soft, comfortable, and safe for the baby.

Additional Features
There are many other additional features such as a toy bar, where spinning, squeaky toys are suspended from toy bars, for keeping the baby entertained. Other models have a dozen songs with additional sound effects to stimulate the baby. Some models have canopies to shield the baby from sunlight when using it outdoors.

Battery Operated
Although most parents want battery-operated bouncers, you need to understand that if you are going to use a bouncer extensively, you will need to change batteries quite frequently. If you are choosing a high-end bouncer with lots of extra features then you can even hook your MP3 player so you can play your favorite tunes.

Size and Weight Requirements

When buying a bouncer, you need to keep the manufacturer's recommendation for size and weight in mind. Some seats are wide and sturdy, and therefore, look like they can accommodate a larger size, but if the manufacturer states that the bouncer can handle only 25 lbs., do not try to accommodate a larger baby on the bouncer. Most bouncers can be used for newborns and babies up to six months old. Once he/she is able to sit up, putting the child in a bouncy chair can be dangerous. Considering the short life span of the bouncer, you may want to opt for a model that transforms into a toddler chair as the baby grows up.

Maintenance

Choose an easy-to-maintain bouncer. Since the bouncer is sure to have a number of spills and other marks on it, you have to choose one that has a removable and washable seat cover.

Price

Do consider the price when buying a bouncer. Bouncer prices can range from $40 to $200. Choosing a high-priced model does not mean you get extra features. A basic Fisher-Price Newborn-to-Toddler Portable Rocker, priced at approximately $44, has two position recline, vibrating option, and a toy bar with really cute hanging baby toys. Although it may not be super deluxe, but considering how often you are going to use it, it is better to choose an inexpensive, lightweight model, rather than choosing an expensive model with a lot of extra features that you would probably never use.

Some great bouncers in the market include:

Fisher-Price Rainforest Bouncer
Fisher-Price Newborn-to-Toddler Portable Rocker
Tiny Love 3-in-1 Rocker Napper
Combi Pod Bouncer
Ingenuity Signature Edition Automatic Bouncer - Shiloh
Chicco I-feel Rocker

Apart from these, there are high-end bouncers such as bloom coco baby lounger stylewood, Mamas & Papas MAGIC astro bouncer - Babyplay Stripe, and 4moms mamaRoo. Choose a baby bouncer wisely so that it keeps the baby busy, entertained, and allows you to get that much-needed shower in peace.
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Published: December 3, 2013
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