There’s just something extra adorable about teeny, tiny baby shoes. The cute little velcro straps are enough to melt anyone’s heart, but unfortunately, those miniature nikes aren’t actually that good for baby’s developing feet. So when should you buy shoes for your infant? And what do you put on their feet until then?
Baby bones are softer than an adult’s. While most parents are used to being careful of the soft skull, many don’t realize their infant’s feet are just as delicate. Rigid shoes, like the ones adults wear, prevent muscles in the feet and legs from working properly and can even disturb the bones. Instead, it’s best to leave your baby and toddler barefoot as much as possible. Your child’s feet won’t be ready for shoes with adult-like rigidity until they reach five years old. In the meantime, just use socks or slippers and select soft, cloth shoes that are highly flexible for toddlers.
Choosing Toddler-Friendly Shoes means picking the most flexible shoes on the market. You’ll want the shoe to easily twist, and you should be able to fold it in half. Pick shoes that are rubber on the bottom and just soft, cloth on the top. For safe outdoor areas, just socks with non-slip bottoms may be the best choice. While indoors, encourage your child to walk and run and toddle without any shoes or socks at all.
Winter boots are going to be more challenging. Living in Canada, we don’t have the luxury of just avoiding shoes altogether until our kids are five. While bunting bags and snow-suits with feet will buy you some time, you’ll eventually need to purchase snow boots for your preschooler. Try to find lightweight, cloth options, and limit time standing and walking in the boots. Maybe go to an indoor pool or dance class to give your toddler ample exercise without going outside.
We parents are constantly busy trying to make the right decisions for our babies and young children. It’s a tough job. Having products like rigid shoes that can harm toddlers makes figuring out which products are safe even harder. If you have any questions about selecting the best gear for your baby or toddler, talk to your doctor. The experts at Cajinka would be happy to work with you and to get you the gear you need. Call us today!