Together we will go room by room to help you consider the main safety areas of your home when beginning to baby proof to protect your infant and/or toddler.
Baby proofing can seem daunting, like an overwhelming task that you just don't know where to begin. Whether you're just starting out or adding more safety features as your child gains mobility and curiosity, let me help guide you on the basics to get you started, so that you can ensure your house is a safe haven for your family.
Let's start with the bathrooms
Bathroom safety is a great place to start. The bathtub faucet can be a bump hazard, so a spout cover is a good idea to attach. Here's a few that are a little more neutral and less kiddie. A non-slip bathtub mat is strongly recommended for bathtubs that tend to be slippery. A water thermometer can help ensure the proper temperature for your baby's bath water.
Babies and toddlers can topple into toilets with the lid open and be unable to get themselves out. Installing a safety latches or locks can help keep the lids closed around curious little fingers. A trash can with a lid is an easy swap that helps keep yucky and dangerous trash where it's supposed to be. Another vital baby proofing attachment to install is cabinet and drawer latches or locks. Lastly, I always recommend closing your bathroom doors, this helps to put another layer of protection between your baby and the hazards in the bathroom. To take this a step further for those extra curious and quick, I recommend doorknob covers or locks.
Moving on to bedrooms
Bedroom furniture must be anchored to the wall to prevent fall hazards. Same goes for tvs that are on a stand and are not wall mounted. If your furniture does not come with wall anchors, ones like these can help to achieve the same goal. Be sure that small items like coins, paperclips and pen caps that might fall out of pockets are picked up from the ground. I know, it seems like common sense, but it's easily overlooked. Sweeping and vacuuming often can help keep these items out of reach.
Kitchens have hazards galore!
Latches and locks (linked in the Bathroom section) should be installed on all cabinets and drawers that have dangerous items like knives, fragile glassware and cleaning chemicals. The stove knobs should have covers to prevent children from accidentally turning on the burners. If your oven doesn't have a lock feature, an oven door lock is strongly recommended and should always be locked whether your oven is on or not.
Another appliance that may need to be locked is a refrigerator, depending on the mischievous or curiosity level of your babe. I know personally, this was needed because my son was constantly emptying the condiments from the bottom shelf and I was tired of cleaning up the mess. I was also concerned about him breaking the glass jars in the fridge. These latches are super easy to use, and easy to take off when we were out of that stage.
"Almost 40% of parents said that their child’s injury could have been avoided had they taken proper childproofing precautions." – www.safehome.org
Living Rooms, Play Rooms & other rooms you spend time in
The areas you spend a majority of your time in should be a top priority for baby proofing. This is likely a living room, play room or den. If this room has a fireplace, a fireplace grate, rubber foam edge protectors and possibly corner guards are strongly recommended. Furniture with sharp edges should have corner protectors put on them to help protect little noggins. Blinds that do not have a childproof cord feature should have a cord windup attachment installed.
Electrical cords and power strips are way less enticing to play with when they're tucked away inside a cord organizer box like this one. Outlet plug covers are also recommended for every outlet within reach of your child. These are great too if you like the look better. And this one is great for outlets in use that are too tempting for your little one to play with. An anti-tip TV strap is so important for any TV not mounted to the wall.
Other baby proofing items to consider
Additionally, these are common hazards that can be found in almost every room of your home, and should be considered during your baby proofing project.
- pet food/water bowls (there's no real way to baby proof these except for moving them from your child's reach, or feeding your pets in a separate space)
I also recommend contacting a local baby proofing professional that can come and install major safety barriers to protect your little ones, like pool fences, stair banisters and help with complex stair layouts.
And lastly, I highly recommend taking a CPR class to get yourself educated on what to do in the event of a choking or cardiac emergency with your little ones. If you're local, I hold monthly classes in Orange, Ca. Here's the link for more info.
Did you baby proof your house? What was something you overlooked and wished you had? Let me know in the comments below.
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