Top Most Dangerous Baby Products: I Used 4 Out of 5


When I think of the "most dangerous" baby products, I tend to think of things like old-school baby walkers positioned next to an open stairway, pajamas coated in flame retardant, and lead-painted toys teeming with tiny, removable magnets.

According to an email I received from the folks at Brilliant Baby Products, however, it turns out the five most dangerous baby items are surprisingly common. At least that's what I'm telling myself, because I've used almost every item on the list.

(Forget mother of the year awards—apparently I'm gunning for mother of the decade.)

The list of the top 5 most dangerous yet most widely used baby products on the market is based on consumer reviews, CPSC recalls, and injury reports. Naturally, Brilliant Baby sells alternatives to each of these items, so I'm taking the compilation with a tiny side serving of salt, but I still found it interesting.

1) Bumbo Baby Seat, due to fall hazards and skull fractures.
Yep, I bought one for my first son and we used it for my second son as well. I'd heard about the possibility of a kid falling if the chair was used on an elevated surface, but ... we plopped ours right up on the table during dinnertime and never thought twice about it. I guess I don't really have an excuse for that, other than we only did it when the kids were little enough that the danger of them tipping over seemed remote.

Apparently baby seats now come with straps. Me, I always found that cramming those pudgy thighs into the leg holders worked just fine, but obviously two CPSC recalls say otherwise.

2) Baby Hammocks, due to suffocation hazards.
Now, this one I totally understand, because I bought a baby hammock before my first son was born and I think I put him in it all of one time before I packed it back up and got rid of it. His tiny body just slid down in that thing until he practically disappeared in the fabric. Yikes.

3) Warm Mist Humidifiers, due to fire/burn hazards.
I never considered the potential for my child to burn himself, or for a fire to break out, or for bacteria and mold to grow in the warm, wet environment it created—all I knew is that my baby had croup and I bought the first thing I could find at the drugstore. I don't think we used it very often after that one scary night, but if you're in the market, apparently you're only supposed to buy the cool mist variety.

4) Plastic Outlet Covers, due to choking hazards.
Okay now we're in CRAZYTOWN. Those stupid plastic plugs that you're supposed to cram in every outlet to keep Junior from electrifying himself are ALSO dangerous? GAHHHHHHHHHH.

Well, frankly I'd like to see any baby pry one of those covers out since I can barely do it with a butter knife and 10 minutes of grunting, but okay, the deal is you're supposed to swap out your traditional outlet plate covers with one that has sliding plastic doors to cover the sockets.

5) Crib bumpers, due to SIDS hazards.
Yes! This one I knew about! I bought a breathable mesh bumper! I AM SUPER MOM! ... ahem. Oh come on, throw me a bone here, at least I didn't buy ONE out of the FIVE DEADLIEST PRODUCTS EVER.
(PS: I also had a drop-side crib. I KNOW. But I didn't know at the time, you know?)

Have you used any of these items? Also, do you think there's any way to truly stay on top of what's deemed dangerous by the baby product experts?

Image via Linda Sharps

baby gear, baby toys, recalls, safety


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Stacey. Stacey.

I guess I am aiming for parent of the decade too, ugh.

Any product can be dangerous if used improperly. Just becasue your house is baby proofed does not mean your baby can go unsupervised. I think it's ridiculous everything is labeled dangerous.

Especially those Bumbo chairs,like, really? What stupid parent thought it would be safe to keep a baby in a Bumbo chair on top of a table or unsupervised? Unfortunately, all it takes is one dumb parent to make a dumb mistake and we have to make all these extra dumb safety precautions that should be common sense.

nonmember avatar allison

Yeah... I used every single one of those except the baby hammock, had to google that one. The bumbo was great for feeding before a high chair was necessary. I used the warm air humidifier for about a week when we were ALL sick and my youngest was still in our room. Fast forward about 3 months later when I decided I needed to rearrange and I moved our bookcase and hoo boy. black mold all up the back side of it and the wall. I still have it and still use it if absolutely necessary... but never more than one or two days in a row. That mold scarred me for life.

Cryst... CrystalYaris

I didn't know about the outlet covers. Well then... So much for that idea! Where do you find those "super cool and safe" outlet plate cover with the sliding door?

GirlN... GirlNamedBillie

Bumbo seats are only dangerous because parents don't supervise their kids while they sit in them and they think it's fun to put them on tables and counter tops. I used a bumbo for both my girls and they never received any injuries because they were never left alone in them.

GirlN... GirlNamedBillie

Also, mobile kids shouldn't be in them anyways.

nonmember avatar Cynthia

Like Stacey said, ANY PRODUCT CAN BE DANGEROUS WHEN USED IMPROPERLY! The key is to use them all properly and with caution. Not every product is going to work for every child/parent either. There are a lot of safety risks with infant "bucket" car seats because they can be used improperly and people use them FAR more than a child is supposed to be in them, but they're still on the market and people are encouraged to use those! Even the old walkers with wheels-they are not unsafe, all that needed to be done was to make them larger than a standard door width, and put the warnings on them! If you don't leave the doors open when your child is not in it, why would you when they are in the walker?

Akgirl85 Akgirl85

Tried the Bumbo at three months and his chubby legs didn't fit it some returned it. Those outlet covers, yes, sometimes I forget to put them back in after using an outlet and my son has almost stuffed one in his mouth before and I'm debating tossing them. Why don't they make outlets out of kids' reach? Never used bumpers as he never slept in a crib. Or the humidifier. Those hammocks look comfy but I've never even seen one before. Honestly every item seems like one of those things you feel like you have to have when you have a baby but you don't really.

writi... writingafwife

@stacey both my sisters use their bumbos on their kitchen tables and constantly leave the kid drives me nuts. I caught my nephew once and my niece at least six times,.neither of my sisters cared when I told them after they turned back around

Craft... CraftyJenna

Number 5 irritates me, everyone treats SIDs and suffication like they are interchangable. Crib bumpers pose a SUFFOCATION hazzard, not a SIDs hazard because SIDs is SUDDEN INFANT DEATH SYNDROM, no cause, no prevention.


Melis... Melissa042807

We used the Bumbo on the table occasionally too, but only if we were sitting right there eating dinner or something. Otherwise kiddo was on the floor. And the first time he got himself out of the Bumbo (in our carpeted family room) we switched straight to the high chair. Seems like common sense to me. But then, common sense is becoming more and more uncommon, isn't it? 

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