When I was pregnant with my daughter Stella Rose, I became obsessed with nesting and creating the perfect home for her. She is now a 1-year-old and I am still constantly re-arranging my home to eliminate safety hazards. It is my opinion that child proofing is a never ending responsibility. As your child grows so will their ability to come into contact with hazardous or unsafe items. Here are my twelve tips for child proofing your home:
- Hazards: Find and eliminate hazards in your home- Are there small food items, toys or materials your child could choke on? Are there long loose cords or strings that
could potentially become wrapped around their necks? Babies should not sleep with loose blankets, pillows or toys in their cribs. Can you clean or disinfect any germy messes to prevent allergies or illness?
- Cleaning supplies: Be sure you have a proper cleaning arsenal: a broom, mop, trash can, bleach, Lysol wipes, vacuum, Swiffer dust wipes and disinfectant spray.
- On that note: Be sure to lock up cleaning supplies in a high location out of reach of your child’s tiny eyes, mouth and fingers. When you are finished, always put away power tools, cleaning supplies, etc.
- Weapons: If you choose to keep them in your home, ALWAYS lock up guns, knives, bow & arrow, any and all weapons in a safe! Do not tell children where the weapons are or how to access them.
- Heavy items: Anchor down tvs, glass, heavy items and anything that can fall on baby or break. Loose hanging cords to items such as a toaster may pull down items onto your child.
- Electricity: Electric outlets sockets and cords need protective covers to prevent electrocution.
- Lock doors: Keep cabinets, doors, toilet, refrigerators shut and if possible locked with a safety device. Always lock your front door, windows and arm your alarms.
- Drowning hazards: All pools should be gated and locked. Limit access to the toilet, bathtub, puddles, ponds, fountains. Bodies of water should not be played in unsupervised by adults because it only takes a small amount of water for a child to drown.
- Safety Gates: There are many items you can buy to corral your children like safety gates, stair gates, pack and plays, cribs, high chairs, bouncy chairs and swings. But never leave your child unattended.
- Falls: Consider cushion for falls if you have hard tile or wood floors. Put a play mat down for your little ones.
- Emergency Contact: Have phone numbers for 9-1-1, poison control, pediatrician, Mom and Dad’s cell phone numbers available and posted somewhere like the fridge.
- Adjust: Always closely supervise your children. Expect the unexpected. Their abilities are constantly changing. Therefore you as a parent need to be vigilant and continually re-adjust and reassess for risk management.
Have you recently had a little one? Do you remember what tips you put in place when your kids were younger? Share your suggestions in the comments section below on how you child proofed your home!