Top tips on how to child proof your home
Having children around is a big transition and one that few people are prepared for. While the emotional and lifestyle changes might take a while to adjust to there are some simple steps you can take to ensure your home is at least child proof, no matter what age your children are now. The major risks to children in the home are: falls, issues with water, electrical shocks and burns and household items, such as cleaning fluid, that are eaten or swallowed. These are our top tips on how to ensure that your home is as hazard free as possible.
Install a baby gate
You’ll need two for each set of stairs, one at the top and one at the bottom. A baby gate helps to prevent falls and accidents on the stairs and provides peace of mind to parents.
Buy electrical outlet covers
First of all check whether your electrical outlets are tamper-proof – new build homes tend to have these installed as standard. If not then you may need to invest in electrical outlet covers to prevent electric shocks to curious children who like to stick items in sockets.
Secure your dressers
Make sure dresser drawers are fitted with stops so that they cannot be pulled out – children can be injured pulling out drawers as well as by the dresser itself, which may topple when all drawers are fully extended.
Nail bookcases to the wall
In fact, anything free standing that could be pushed or toppled should be nailed down to ensure that a space is truly child proof.
Mount your monitors
If you have a freestanding TV it might be worth investing in a wall mount so that it can’t be knocked or pushed over. TVs can be very expensive to replace and also tend to be heavy, which means they can do a lot of damage.
Make sure an open fire is inaccessible
Hot coals can be fascinating to young children so invest in a protective grate for the front of a fire to keep little hands at a safe distance.
Fit window guards
If you have windows that open fully (as opposed to sash windows that open in halves) it makes sense to fit window guards to stop children climbing out. You can also fit blockers to prevent the window from opening more than a set distance e.g. four inches.
Have a safer bath time
Turn down the temperature on a water heater to reduce opportunities for scalding. When kids are in the bath, remain in the bathroom – don’t rely on bathtub supports.
Tidy up and away
Remove rugs and runners that are close to staircases and could be a trip hazard. Tidy away electrical cables that could be pulled or bitten – its often a good idea to hide them behind heavy furniture.
One of the easiest ways to child proof your home is to get down on the floor and see what jumps out at you as dangerous but within reach. From easily accessible medicines to blind cords that could accidentally strangle, you’ll be able to take care of potential hazards once you’re able to see them.
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