*This is a collaborative guest post
As any new parent knows, keeping your family’s new addition safe is so important. While most homes are a safe and comfortable place for a young child to grow up in, it’s crucial to take extra steps to ensure your child’s safety.
By taking the necessary steps to child-proofing your home, you can focus on spending time with your little one without the constant worrying. Keep them out of mischief by using our guide to ensure your home will be a safe haven for years to come.
1. Secure dangerous materials
For a very reasonable price, you can pick up safety locks for any drawers or cupboards that may become problematic if your child decides to explore their contents. Anything that contains cleaning products, medicine or alcohol are a good place to start – although it’s better practice to move these items way out of arm’s reach in cabinets that aren’t accessible. If this isn’t an option, fitting safety locks is a necessity. Also consider anything that contains small parts such as stationery to avoid them getting their hands on anything that’s a potential choking hazard.
2. Watch out for the windows
Window hazards are easily forgotten when there’s so much to think about in the rest of the home.
However, it’s important to protect against all eventualities. By moving high furniture away from windows, you can prevent against your youngster’s urge to climb onto the window ledge. If this isn’t practical in your home, adding child restrictors to any accessible windows stops them opening too far. It’s also worth noting that you should look out for window blinds, as some with looped cords can be dangerous if your child does manage to get to where they shouldn’t be.
3. Keep them out of dangerous areas
Installing baby gates in the doorways to rooms they shouldn’t be stops your little explorer going where they shouldn’t. You can also purchase door handle protectors, the cheaper alternative to a baby gate, which will stop them opening any doors for a similar reason. If you are going to use a baby gate, the place they’re most useful are at the top and bottom of staircases. Keeping them away from the stairs unsupervised is much easier if you’ve got one of these installed!
4. Cover it or move it
For anything that’s at the perfect height for your child to mess with, consider buying some simple gadgets to conceal the danger. Plug socket covers are a simple fix to this problem. You can also purchase effective radiator covers to prevent accidental burns. Anything that can’t be covered needs to be left completely out of reach. When cooking, turn your pan handles away from you to stop your little one grabbing for them, and unplug and move electrical equipment such as hair straighteners. Clean up any small items that may find their way onto the floor such as loose change; suffocation and choking is the biggest threat to young children in your home, so taking preventative measures is imperative.
5. Secure your furniture
As your child begins to explore their environment they’ll no doubt make their way to pieces of furniture. Any large pieces such as book cases and sets of drawers have the potential to fall when played with. By securing these to walls, you can avoid any serious accidents occurring.
6. Cover sharp corners
Applying edge guards to any corners or hard edges avoids any bumps becoming any worse than just a bump. They’re a great way of ensuring your child doesn’t cut themselves on these corners. Whilst it may not be practical to do this for every corner or edge in your home, place them anywhere that may be head height and in areas your child spends the most time.
7. Prevent trapped fingers
Trapped fingers are painful, no matter whether it’s you or your little one. Using door stops means that their little fingers won’t be trapped by any out-swinging doors. If practical, also consider installing slow-shutting cupboards and drawers. You can also purchase door closers from most
hardware stores, if you’d like to do this for your main doors as well.
8. Avoid trips and tumbles
Cleaning up as you go to remove tripping hazards, such as clothing or toys, is a fairly obvious one. However, there are also a couple of extra steps you can take to prevent tumbles. Use electrical cable to tidy up any loose wires, and ensure there’s adequate lighting when your little one is up on their feet. If you also happen to have wood flooring, remove their slippery socks to stop them slipping.
Although it’s not completely exhaustive, the list in this guide will hopefully give you a great start when child-proofing. Here’s to a safe and happy home!