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There comes a time in every parent's life when you need to have your growing baby distract themselves for a few minutes safely. You just might want a shower! There are many devices to safely contain and engage a growing baby: chairs with mobiles, "exersaucers" with a hanging seat inside a ring of small toys, bouncy seats, and swings. Whew! You might find that one of these is helpful, but you probably won't want more than two of these items.
Flame retardants are used inside electronic devices of all kinds and can be found in recycled plastics or textiles. The plastics used in large items like "exersaucers" are rarely labeled, so it is difficult to identify vinyl, bisphenols, or other plastics of concern. Manufacturers reported to Washington State the use of solvents ethylene glycol and ethylbenzene, and the heavy metal antimony in baby exercisers.
Babies don't need electronic flashes and beeps to be entertained. In fact, those beeps, if too loud, can cause hearing loss, and the rapidly changing sounds and lights can promote later challenges to attention and ability to focus.
Walkers and jumpers may also delay balance and walking, and there are additional concerns with physical safety. Walkers let babies move faster and farther than they could do on their own, and could fall down stairs or knock things over.
Be selective about which and how many of these kinds of products you need. A fabric seat with a mobile may be enough to give you respite you need. Generally, these items are hard to choose before you know your baby's preferences. Avoid electronic gadgets embedded in the larger toy. Avoid any labeled as being antimicrobial: babies will mouth anything they can.
References & Resources
Toy Safety Tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics
Learn more about the hidden hazards by reviewing the glossary or take a deep dive by reading Safer Products for Babies and Toddlers: Resources and Recommendations for Retailers.