Entertaining your baby using a bouncer, musical swing or rocker chair is a popular choice by many parents, but many are not aware of the safety risks. Follow these simple guidelines to keep your baby safe.

What is the safest bouncer, musical swing or rocker to buy?

Australia does not have any mandatory safety standards for bouncers, musical swings or rocker chairs. However, essential safety features to look for are:

  • Any equipment that restrains a baby should ideally have a five-point restraint system – a harness that goes over both shoulders, around the waist and between the legs.
  • Look for a sturdy construction, with no pinch points or sharp edges
  • Ensure the footing area has a non-slip surface (i.e. rubber) to prevent the equipment from moving as your baby bounces
  • A seat that is made of a strong fabric and is securely fasten to the frame
  • If the equipment has power-operated features (i.e. music, lights on toy-bar) then ensure the battery compartment has a screw fitting to keep it closed.

Safety tips for using a bouncer, musical swing or rocker with your baby

  • Always secure your child into the bouncer, swing or rocker and adjust the harness to fit snugly.
  • Take care that extra blankets or clothing do not ride up covering your baby’s face creating a suffocation hazard
  • If your baby falls asleep, remember to closely monitor them if they are having a small nap. Better still, transfer them to their cot for longer sleep.

NEVER place the bouncer, swing or rocker on an elevated surface like a bed or bench or an uneven surface. Place it on the floor, away from stairs, and ensure your baby can’t reach hazards such as power cords, heaters or blind cords.

NEVER use a bouncer, swing or rocker for unsupervised sleep as there have been many deaths related to sleeping babies on inclined surfaces.

Common childhood injuries from bouncers, musical swings or rockers

There have been international reports of deaths and serious injuries where a bouncer, swing or rocker has fallen from an elevated or unstable surface. There have also been asphyxiation deaths reported when babies have been in bouncers, rolled over and ended up with their face against the fabric sitting surface. Other injuries include:

  • Facial injuries from tip-over incidents or baby trying to climb out
  • Pinched or trapped fingers and limbs in the frame or toy-bar
  • Scratching, pinching or striking injuries from toy-bars

Need some advice? 

Kidsafe Qld’s mission is to provide evidence-based practical advice to empower parents and caregivers to make informed choices to prevent childhood injuries. We are at your service and welcome any questions you might have around injury prevention and keeping kids safe at home, on the road and at play. 
 
Call Kidsafe Qld: 3854 1829