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Fisher Price Healthy Care Deluxe Highchair
(9 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating:
My child doesn't like it!
May 12, 2005 (Updated May 16, 2005)
Review by firsttimemom
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Washable cover, tethered toy, sturdy chair, washable trays
Cons:uncomfortable, casters lock easily, many crevices to collect food, tray pops off , bulky
The Bottom Line: It is a good value, if you child happens to find it comfortable. But if you child is unhappy you will realize things about the chair that bug you, too!
I researched high chairs on Epinions and Amazon and was determined that I wanted a Healthy Care High Chair - but I wanted the new deluxe version that had casters and 3 removable, dishwasher safe trays. It seemed like the perfect choice, too, a very nice, sturdy chair at a descent price. Well, BabiesRus only had the chair in the Linkadoos pattern when it was time for me to register, so I put it on the registry. Of all of the things I selected for the registry, this was the only items that my husband disliked. He did not like the cover that came with the Linkadoos chair. Still determined that I had to have this chair, I ordered it from what was at the time the only on-line store that was selling the chair in a pattern other than Linkadoos. The chair arrived while I was in the hospital having the baby. A few weeks later I put it together.
Recommend this product?
Okay, the chair is pretty easy to assemble. It is a sturdy, good-looking chair, too. It has 7 seat heights, 3 removable, dishwasher safe trays and a vinyl coated, machine washable cover. It has an adjustable 5 point harness, a removable extra head cushion and a plastic piece that comes up between the child's legs to give one more bit of protection against falling out of the chair. It has locking caster wheels and the back of the seat can be upright or go back and recline in 2 other positions. Oh yea, and it has a toy that sort of tethers to the main tray with a link type piece, (to which the washable trays connect), so that the child has something to play with. We have used this link piece to attach additional links and then attach various toys to the tray, which have been helpful when our child was sitting in the chair, but not eating. We have also attached additional links and then hooked a sippy cup to them to try and keep him from throwing the cup on the floor. Sounds, great, right?
Well,my child has been using this chair at least 3 times per day for about 7 months now. Many meals have resulted in him pushing against the try and harness and groaning, like he is trying to push his way out of the chair. On the worst occasions he has gotten very upset in the seat, crying and fussing, sometimes producing tears! One time my husband asked me if I was sure there weren't nails protruding out of the back of the seat poking him, he was so upset! We didn't know if he just disliked being restrained, (which he does not mind in his carseat), or if he was uncomfortable. As things have gotten worse we think it must be a big comfort issue.
I have loosened the harness as much as I can, to make sure it is not too tight on him. It does look like it will soon be too tight for him, though it is okay right now. (He is a big child, but well within the age and size limits for this chair). I have tried the chair with the tray attached but no harness, (and me close by), and with the harness, but no tray, using our kitchen table instead of the tray and putting the chair on the lowest height. None of this has eleviated his apparent discomfort. I even removed the extra head cushion, hoping to provide more room for him. No improvement.
Well, this week a dear friend loaned me her Safety First Grow with me Portable Booster and we have been very pleased so far! My child seems much happier than he did in his high chair. I am realizing how nice it is to strap him in a booster attached to a regular dining chair, rather than having that big, bulky high chair in our kitchen. And it seems much easier to clean the booster than this high chair. It seems the more bells and whistles on the high chair, the more crevices there are to collect food particles.
I will most likely buy a booster for us to use at home, and I am undecided what to do with this high chair. I could save it for a future child, but it is so large to store. It is very tempting to buy a booster for this child and other boosters - of the same or different style - for future children and forgo the whole high chair idea all together!
In hindsite, I kind of wish I had skipped buying a high chair, waiting until my child actually needed a high chair, and then tried some of them out in the store. I wish I had gone with a simplier high chair with less crevices to clean and most importantly, one that was comfortable for my child. Or I wish I had gone with the Safety First Grow with Me Booster or another booster to start with. Other than the tethered toy link on the Fisher Price chair, the extra features on this chair don't excite me!
Let me review those features and tell you my afterthoughts:
It has 4 seat heights - I sit when I feed my child and would be happy with a chair that just has a low height. That is easier on a sitting parent plus it seems safer than having a chair that is very high.
3 removable, dishwasher safe trays - These trays are very large. You first have to figure out where to store the ones you are not using. It is nice that they are dishwasher safe, but having 4 of them just perpetuates my laziness. I put them in the dishwasher and take up lots of space, rather than going ahead and cleaning them in the seat. Also, the base tray to which these attach, (and which can be used alone), is pretty straight across, instead of contouring around the child's mid section. That makes it more uncomfortable for chubby kids like mine. And the base tray pops off pretty easily, or is hard to always get on the chair securely with my chubby child in the chair. Either way, ours has popped off, (with the child's help), several times.
A vinyl coated, machine washable cover - If your chair in going to have a cover, then this is the way to go. But I am not sure that the seat of this chair is that much more comfortable than the neat booster I am borrowing. And the chair has ruffles on it that catch food.
It has an adjustable 5 point harness - My child dislikes the shoulder harness, but I cannot complain too much about this feature because it is for safety. Fisher Price does need to make a longer harness, though, because big children outgrow these too soon.
A removable extra head cushion - That is fine
A plastic piece that comes up between the child's legs to give one more bit of protection against falling out of the chair - I think that might be one of the things really upsetting my child about this chair. Perhaps it is uncomfortable or even hurts him!
It has locking caster wheels - They lock easily, even when you do not want them to. Also, when I wheel the chair around I have 4 wheels going in all different directions, making it a little tricky to scoot.
The back of the seat can be upright or go back and recline in 2 other positions - Why does a high chair need to recline. Unless I am using it to hold an infant that is not eating at the time, I see no purpose for this. I don't think you are supposed to feed a child solids that cannot sit up straight. Reclining them to eat sounds like a choking hazard to me.
It has a toy that sort of tethers to the main tray, (to which the washable trays connect), so that the child has something to play with. This toy has a loop to that we have used to attach other links to and connect our child's sippy cup to try and keep him from being able to throw the cup on the floor - this is a nice feature. We have attached various toys to the chair at different times and it has been helpful.
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