Baby Safety Month: 4 Ideas to Remember for Baby-Proofing Your Home
September is Baby Safety Month. As parents we watch and hover but there’s always a moment when we take our eyes off our crawling children. Baby-proofing your home is an extra measure of precaution for those times when we look away. Here are 4 ideas to remember when you baby-proof your house.
Big Survey your house for big pieces of furniture that look like an opportunity for climbing or tugging that could possibly topple like a bookcase or a chest of drawers. To get perspective, crawl on the floor as if you were a baby and look for things you might like to use to pull yourself up or even just to grab on to. Make sure those items are securely anchored to the wall and won’t move with a big push or pull.
Small Remove any kind of knickknacks from reach or view. Babies don’t have boundaries or a sense of limitation so if they see something they like, they will do anything in their power to get to it and probably put it in their mouths. Remove the temptation and you reduce the risk of injury from a failed attempt to grab an out of reach item or choking from trying to eat the item. You may have to put tiny, tempting items away for many years, but you’ll get to keep your keepsake and keep your baby safe.
Up Look for anything dangling within reach of a flexible baby. Think about table cloths, panhandles, utensils, plants, and electrical cords for table lamps. In the kitchen, while you’re cooking, make sure knives and sharp kitchen tools are away from the edge of the counter and panhandles are turned inward. Install knob covers on the stove range dial as well as any other doors around the house. Secure lamp cords to the backs of end tables or to the wall so they’re out of sight and not easy to grab. For plants, do research on houseplants you keep and make sure they’re not poinsonous. For windows, make sure there’s a window guard for windows you open often. Secure cords for blinds or drapes so they’re out of reach and babies can’t pull on them or get tangled up in them. Put floor lamps behind large pieces of furniture that can’t topple like a couch or recliner.
Down Cover all electrical outlets. Cover any sharp corners with edge guards and install latches on cabinet doors in the kitchen and bathroom where babies encounter the most dangers like cleaning supplies and small appliances. Hide or conceal electrical cords. Install safety gates at stairwells and around rooms you don’t want your baby to enter. Put drawer latches on all drawers. Babies love to pull on drawer handles and use drawers as stepping stools.
Having babies around puts us on high alert, but we can never be too cautious when it comes to our little ones. Even if you think you’ve taken all the right precautions, it doesn’t hurt to make another safety check every so often.