On baby’s first few months, shoes are little more than accessories; still, the wrong shoes can affect the proper development of baby’s feet. When the early stage of walking begins, choosing the right footwear for baby becomes even more important.
Here are the things you need to consider when selecting the perfect shoes for your baby:
For infants and toddlers who are just beginning to learn how to walk, footwear made with soft leather or canvas are best because they are lightweight, breathable, and flexible. They are comfortable, and they allow baby to get a good feel of the ground beneath their feet. This helps stabilize baby’s steps and also allows the foot muscles to develop the necessary strength to support baby’s walking.
The fact is, as far as muscle development is concerned, it is best for baby to be barefoot. This allows baby the greatest freedom of movement, and it lets baby exercise his or her muscles the best. The foot’s soles are also well designed to prevent slippage.
However, if baby must wear shoes – then it is best to choose shoes that simulate barefootedness as much as possible. Thin and soft soles let babies move their feet freely. Baby shoes with soft rubber material on the soles help prevent slipping.
Synthetic or plastic soles are a big no-no, as baby’s feet tend to sweat more with these materials.
If you could stick your thumb in the area between the toes and the tip of the shoe, then that is the perfect size for your baby. This little allowance is just right for baby’s feet to wiggle and move around without blistering the feet inside. It is not so loose that baby’s feet keep slipping all around the shoes.
Footwear with buckles, straps, or ribbons may be cute to look at, but remember that babies can be fidgety, and they are unlikely to stay still long enough for you to tie those cute little laces. The best choice, therefore, are shoes that are fastened on with snaps or Velcro – anything that can be locked in 0.5 seconds flat.
Remember, too, that babies are notorious for eating up their shoes when nobody is watching. Avoid laces, ribbons, buttons, and other things that can come off and become choking hazards for your baby.