First time parents might get too excited when buying stuff for the nursery but when going out to shop for things to place in the room, safety should be your number one priority.
- Make sure changing table has safety straps.
- Bolt furniture to the walls. Don’t underestimate the fun of using dresser drawers as stairs.
- Keep soft bedding, pillows and stuffed animals out of the sleeping space.
- Remove any hanging crib toys when baby first begins to push up.
- Space between the mattress and the crib sides should be less than the width of two fingers.
- Avoid toy boxes with hinged lids that snap shut. Look for one with a sliding top or ventilated removable top.
- Make sure crib slats are no more than 2 3/8 inches apart (you shouldn’t be able to fit a soda can between the slats) to prevent your baby’s body from slipping or getting caught between the bars. The crib shouldn’t have any missing or broken slats.
- Slip a rubber cover over the tub spout to avoid head bump
- Purchase non-slip mats in and out of the tub. This will keep your baby – and you – safe even when water is splattered everywhere.
- Install a toiloet lock to avoid smashed fingers, unsanitary exposure and accidental drowning. If your baby leans over to peer into the toilet bowl, he could easily lose his balance, fall in headfirst, and drown in as little as an inch of water.
- Make sure you close your toilet seat after each use! We also installed this toilet seat since it has a built in baby seat and is self closing so it won’t slam little fingers!
- Never leave your baby alone in the bathtub, not even for a moment. If the doorbell rings, scoop him up in a towel and take him with you. Bring your cell phone or a cordless phone into the bathroom if you feel you can’t miss a call.
- Set your hot water heater no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celsius). A lower water temperature helps ensure safe bathing by reducing the chance of scalding (it takes just three seconds for a child to get a serious burn). You can also install an anti-scalding device on your faucets.
- Unplug your blow-dryer, curling iron, and any other appliances that create heat, and put them away after each use to prevent burns.
- Make sure all electrical outlets near the sink or tub are protected by a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
- If you have a very small space inside the bathroom and you cannot keep the medicine cabinet high up the wall, simply lock it so your child can’t get into anything poisonous inside. In case of accidental swallowing, call Poison Control at 800-222-1222.
- Lock up spray bottles and detergents. Colorful liquids look like something tasty to drink.
- Remove laundry scoops, which look like toys and likely have toxic residue.
- Position the washer as far back against the wall as possible, according to your manual. Limit space between washer and dryer.
- Pad sharp corners of furniture.
- Hide anything with battery remotes, musical greeting cards, key fobs or keep them up high and out of baby’s reach.
- Every home has a TV, and unfortunately, they’re like magnets for the curious toddler. And flatscreen televisions are even more dangerous than the big, bulky ones we had when we were kids. Anchor flat-screen Tvs and bolt bookshelves and stereo cabinets to the wall to prevent injuries to tiny explorers
- Pad the fireplace hearth to cushion any falls. Secure fireplace screen and add a heat-resistant guard or glass door. Move keys for gas fireplaces. And make sure you remove all those pointy fireplace tools.
- Cover all outlets with plastic plugs, unplug all chargers. Babies love to yank.
- If you have indoor plants, keep them out of reach of your child or better yet, move them outside.
- If you have a low window, they should not be open more than four inches. Install window stops or window guards, as well as doorstops.
- Update the gates on your stairs as soon as your child is able to reach it to prevent falling accidents.
- Clear the under- sink area of hazardous cleaners and pesticides or lock doors securely.
- Install cabinet latches on all doors.
- Lock stove knobs, refrigerator and dishwasher.
- Install cover on garbage disposal.
- Remove refrigerator magnets, as they can be swallowed.
- Turn pot handles to back of stove and use back burners only.
- Don’t put detergent in the diswasher until it’s time to do disshes and wipe out any residue. Colorful pods and sweet smells can be tempting.
- Point all sharp objects down in dishwasher.
- Make sure that your fire extinguisher in the kitchen is placed high on a pantry shelf or in a childproof cabinet.
- Move the toaster, coffeemaker, and all other electrical appliances out of your child’s reach. Unplug them and hide the cords when they’re not in use.
- Consider equipping your kitchen faucet with an anti-scalding device or setting your water heater to 120 degrees or lower.
- Install a fire extinguisher in the kitchen and on each floor of the house.
- Don’t use tablecloths or place mats. Babies will tug at them and pull off everything on top.
- Keep sharp utensils locked up.
- Unplug shredder. Lock up staplers, letter openers, scissors, pens and small items such as paper clips.
- Place heavy books on bottom shelves.
- Organize and protect cord and secure them to the baseboards.
- Keep all toxic plants, like philodendrons and daffodils, out of reach or outside. Avoid rocks and other potential choking hazards in potting soil. Also watch for hanging vines little fingers could pull.
* * * * *
Hear are some great resources that can also help keep your baby safe:
By following these tips, you can babyproof your home. In the end, close supervision is still needed if you would like to make sure that your child is safe from physical harm while inside your home.