Every responsible parent should know how to make their house safe for their small child. In this post, Fantastic Handymen give a few of the most important pointers.
For first time parents, it’s often panic inducing to look around the house and see death traps anywhere. The bad news, you can’t protect your child 24/7, sometimes you have to leave for work, or domestic chores.
The good news, you can turn your home into a safe haven. Here’s how to childproof your home.
How to Childproof Your Home
- Check each room from your child’s viewpoint. Get down on your hands and knees and see what looks tempting and what’s within easy reach of those tiny, little fingers. You’ll have to do this several times during the first few years in order to re-evaluate any potential dangers as they’re going to grow a little taller every year. What doesn’t pose a threat when a baby is only crawling will quickly be within reach when they start to walk.
- Remove all your carpets. If you don’t want to be worried about your toddler slipping on a loose mat (and that’s very possible, once they start walking), it’s better to invest in a wood flooring option. It’s easier to clean anyway. Another idea is to fit your carpets with anti-slip covering on the bottom.
- Stabilize furniture. Pay very special attention to bookcases and other vertical examples that are possible to topple over. In Japan, most of high floor flats have furniture equipped for earthquakes. It’s not a bad idea to implement the technology.
- Cover radiators. It’s mandatory to invest in a radiator cover when having a baby or a toddler at home. Hey are offered practically everywhere and even have aesthetic decorations.
- Safety fit all drawers and cupboards. Install safety catches on every furniture that opens and closes. Keep the doors and drawers from slamming shut and potentially hurting tiny curious fingers.
- Deal with plants. We would suggest to simply take them out of your place. Babies and toddlers should not be able to dip their tiny hands in the soil. Especially when in the phase of putting everything in their mouths. Not to mention some plants and flowers, as beautiful as they are, are harmful for ingestion. Here is a list of harmful household plants you might have at home, or might consider buying. Our advice – keep any kind of plants away from your house when you have a baby or toddler.
- Clear rooms from light objects. It’s essential not only to keep your house clean and tidy, but also to put away everything that can fall on the floor, be thrown, or is small enough to get swallowed. This is essential, as it can happen in a few seconds you happen to not be looking at your child. Don’t forget to put away all big table covers. Don’t underestimate your baby’s upper body strength – they can pull the cover with everything on it from their spot on the floor.
- Protect electrical outlets. Invest in electrical outlet protection. You can find them in any store.
- Fit a stair gate. If your house has stairs, and your toddler has started crawling around, it’s essential to install a stair gate to save them from falling down the stairs. Put one both at the top and at the bottom. You can also put them anywhere you don’t want your child to go to, like a storeroom, or the kitchen.
- Consider corner cushions. A good way to eliminate risks of your baby to get hurt on any corner of the room.
How to Childproof the Kitchen
Make sure to start with a “lower view” of the room, like in the previous. This is the best way to find all the problematic sports that are just at a tiny arm’s reach.
- Fit catches on cupboards. Just like in the living room and just about anywhere in the house, make sure the cupboards and drawers in the kitchen are safe for fingers.
- Keep dangerous objects out of reach. The kitchen is the room with the most dangerous objects in the house – breakable tableware, cutlery, household cleaning products, small electrical devices like toasters, kitchen robots and more. Find a place for everything in a cupboard that’s out of reach. Don’t leave anything in an open surface.
- Lock the rubbish bin. A very neglected part of the kitchen that gets ignored when it comes to toddler safety.
- Put electrical socket covers. Make sure your baby or toddler has no contact with a bare electrical socket.
- Make sure you have a working smoke alarm. This goes without question, even you don’t have a baby or a small child at home. But, make sure to double check your smoke alarm just in case.
- Keep your baby out of the kitchen. In the end, this is the best you can do to prevent any accident in the kitchen. You can use a gate at the door to prevent your little one from getting inside once they start crawling and walking.
How to Childproof the Bathroom
The best advice is to never leave your child alone in here, especially when in the bath. A baby can drown in just a couple of inches of water.
- Install safety latches on cabinets and drawers. Especially, if they contain dangerous household products, or medicine, electric razors, etc.
- Install toilet locks to keep lid closed. Babies and toddlers are very curious and crawling into the toilet is not a rare case of interest.
- Prevent burns. Install anti-scalding device on each surface that tends to get hot, like shower heads.
- Choose a bathing seat. Wet babies are slippery. The bathing seat will keep your baby secured in place, during all baths.
- Use a thermometer. Always run cold water into the bath before hot. Then test the temperature with your hand and the thermometer.
For more information on how to babyproof your home, you can look up The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.