Expectant and new parents should babyproof their homes to prevent serious injury or death once their baby starts crawling and moving around. Babyproofing keeps curious little ones safe from dangers they do not yet realize are there. Parents have peace of mind knowing their baby is free to roam around the house without dangers. While a quick online search reveals endless babyproofing tips, parents may feel overwhelmed with the information and find themselves unsure where to start. Parents may also go overboard in babyproofing if they worry too much. The following checklist provides a basic look at the most important areas of the home to babyproof and keeps your bundle of joy safe.
1- Check the Hot Water Heater Settings
Babies roam around the house at the speed of light, often out of mom and dad’s sight before they realize they’re gone. The water heater is a dangerous area of the home, at least for a 20-pound baby with no idea how hot it is or that the water can seriously burn them. Parents can help prevent this danger by adjusting the water heater to a temperature of 120 degrees. Change the water heater temperature before the baby reaches 15-months old since this age usually begins the curious stage of life. Thousands of babies visit the ER with scalds and burns every single year. Adjust the water heater and this is one less thing for you to worry about.
2- Secure the Bathroom
Bathrooms fascinate small children. The toilet whirls around when it flushes, water comes out of objects when you turn knobs, and so much more excitement awaits a baby. It takes just a few inches of water to drown a baby. Should they sneak into the bathroom and fall into the toilet or sink or tub water, they can drown. Cleaning products in the bathroom oftentimes attract children because they’re so colorful. Children do not realize the dangers inside the bathroom. Parents can keep them out of cabinets with cabinet locks. The childproof locks prevent small hands from opening them, reducing the risks of an accident.
3- Crib Safety
An average of 36 crib-related deaths occurs every year, according to the CPSC. These deaths are preventable. Another 12,000 babies visit the emergency room every year for injuries related to the crib and the crib mattress. Although the crib-rail height may be in proportion when your baby is a newborn, adjustments are necessary when they begin pulling up. When a baby can pull up on the crib, they can easily topple out and injure themselves. Adjust the crib rail to the appropriate level as soon as he shows interest in pulling up.
4- Protect Children From Electricity
Electricity is dangerous for adults and children, but kids are unaware of the dangers or how to stay safe. Parents have many solutions to keep their baby or toddler safe. The CPSC estimates an average of 11 electrocution deaths in children under 18 occurs each year. At the same age when children become curious about knobs is the same time they find electrical outlets pretty cool, especially sticking objects in them. The perfect solution is electrical outlet covers. Baby’s tiny fingers cannot remove the covers so nothing goes inside.
5- Window Blinds Safety
Cords from window blinds pose a choking hazard to small children. An average of two children visits the ER due to window blind cord injuries each day. No matter how many times you say ‘no’, small kids cannot resist pulling and tugging on the cords. Purchase a cord safety tie or replace the current blinds with cordless versions to prevent children from becoming entangled in the blinds.
6- Invest in Baby Gates
A baby gate prevents small children from climbing upstairs, closing and locking doors, or sneaking into forbidden rooms (like the kitchen or bathroom.) Several gate styles work wonderfully in apartments and homes of all sizes. Experts advise parents to begin using safety baby gates at around six-months when the baby starts crawling.
7- Keep Cleaning Products Out of Children’s Reach
Around 84,000 children visit the emergency room each year for injuries related to poison exposure after ingesting cleaning products and laundry detergent. Laundry pods are in the top five most common causes of poisoning in children. Keep cleaning products on high shelves while the baby is small, but purchase cabinet locks when they start crawling, around six-months. If your baby can pull up or crawl, he may very well reach cleaning products in the cabinets.
8- Dangerous Corners
The corners of coffee tables are accident hot spots for babies. Protect baby from danger using corner guards for all the tables in your home.
In no time, you’ll get the hang of this parenting stuff and handle it all like a pro. Things will not be as scary and you’ll develop a keen all for all those dangers that face your baby. Until then, keep baby safe and your mind from going crazy with the easy babyproofing tips above. A few simple babyproofing strategies and your little one is safe, healthy, and happy to grow!