Baby Proofing Your Home and Appliances
Baby proofing the living room is especially important to ensure the safety of your child because this is usually the room in which children play the most. As it is also the room in which you as a parent spend the most time, it can have many dangers you may be unaware of. One of the first things to do when baby proofing the living room is to smooth the sharp edges of your furniture. This does not require replacing the pieces, but simply buying plastic edge protectors which are easy to install and remove, and are offered in aesthetically pleasing varieties. Also, it is imperative that you pay special attention to window treatments, taking care to hide the various cords which may provide a hazard to children. The cords are a strangulation hazard and as such should be tied out of reach.
Whether you are baby proofing the master bedroom or a nursery, there are certain things to remember. First, address your electrical outlets. Today, there are more products on the market than the typical outlet guard which might fall out or not be replaced after the outlet is used. Some feature doors which close automatically if the outlet is not in use. Second, anything valuable, fragile, or heavy, should be kept out of reach. Objects on smaller bookshelves, nightstands, and low shelves will often be pulled down by curious children and can pose a danger.
The number one rule regarding baby proofing your bathroom is to never allow your toddler into the bathroom unsupervised. One way of doing this is by attaching a hook-and-eye lock out of reach of the child. Another way is by installing a childproof guard over the doorknob, which requires more pressure to turn the knob than a child can provide. In the bathroom, it is best to make sure all prescription drugs, scissors, razors, etc. are kept out of reach of the child. There are lockboxes available for these objects and any others that might be available in the bathroom. If there is a cabinet under the sink, make sure it is locked to keep cleaning products out of reach.
When it comes to baby proofing a room, the kitchen is one of the most important areas. Within a kitchen, a child can find all manner of poisonous products, sharp knives, a hot oven, or the child can pull potentially scalding pots and pans from the stove. It is best to never allow your toddler into the kitchen unsupervised, but there are ways to reduce the possible danger. First, install locks on all cabinets and drawers. These are not typical door locks, but rather plastic pieces that make it impossible for a child to open a drawer while being entirely convenient for the adults. Second, if possible, keep knives and other sharp utensils out of drawers. Find a way to store these in the cabinets or in another area which is more difficult for a child to reach for years to come.
If your basement is disorganized, the impending arrival of a newborn or your child taking his first steps is the perfect opportunity to organize and baby proof it. The first step is probably childproofing the doorknob to the basement or garage to avoid as much as possible your child reaching these areas of your home. There is still a chance, however, that your child will make his way into the basement or garage, so it still best to keep all dangerous chemicals and materials out of reach either by installing lockable cabinets or putting these materials high up on shelves.
For more information on what you can do to make sure your home is a safe place for your baby, check out the additional resources shown below.
More Childproofing Information
General Baby and Child Safety
- Baby Safety Gates – While every room in the house should be childproofed, these gates will keep your child out of more dangerous rooms when they are shut.
- Choosing Safe Toys – With all the recalls made every year, it is vital to your child's health to know what makes a toy safe.