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Baby Bouncers

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Baby Bouncers: 10 Quick Tips

1. Sometimes swinging just isn't enough excitement for a baby. When this happens, you need a bouncer, which is just as functional for general use as a swing.

2. Different bouncers have different actions, so your baby may prefer one over another. Always check the return policy at the stores where you buy your bouncer and see if you can try a variety of bouncers at friends' houses before making a decision.

3.Baby bouncers, and swings too, are for use during the first 6 months of a baby's life (or from 18 to about 30 pounds). With this in mind, a simple model may serve just as well as some of the higher-priced ones.

4. Safety should be the primary concern, but there are plenty of safe options at very affordable prices. So you don't have to go overboard unless that's what you really want.

5. Even though much of a bouncer's motion is up and down (rather than forward and backward with a swing), it's important to have a wide base for security. The base should be about two to three times as wide as the seat.

6. Pressing down on a bouncer from different angles shouldn't cause it to tip. That is, weight should transfer directly to the floor beneath the bouncer, over the center of gravity.

7. Bouncers and swings often come with a kind of mobile or toy bar that is within baby's reach. Make sure they won't come off with a little force.

8. The toy bar should also be firmly fixed in place without jarring loose or breaking. Most products are built to last, but it's possible that some don't hold up as well as others.

9. As mentioned, few people buy both a swing and a bouncer. Note that baby swings provide a bit more motion than a typical bouncer, which is often just powered by the baby's own motion.

10. Check for non-skid feet on all legs of your bouncer. Even if you'll be putting the bouncer on carpet, you'll want that non-skid protection, just in case.