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A Guide to the New Rules of Parenting: Why Babies Can't Sleep on Their Stomach and More

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toddler standing at baby gate

Gated Play Areas

What's Out: Playpens

What's In: Childproofing your home and giving babies free range under a watchful eye, placing gates when necessary

Why? Playpens are far less common these days, mainly because the idea of a confining "pen" for toddlers just isn't acceptable in today's child-centric, "free-range" world. Child development experts say that babies left in playpens are deprived of stimulation and learning, in the same way that babies left in front of the TV might be. Also, many poorly designed playpens have been recalled over the years due to safety flaws. Nonetheless, you can still find lots of products available these days to help you strike a balance between boundaries and freedom for your tot. Whatever you choose, childproofing your home will be a must at some point!

Next: Infant Cereal


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