From the word go, babies are a handful! No parent can prevent every accident and, while you try to keep your eyes on your child at all times, it simply isn’t always possible. Accidents happen and since babies are at home in their earlier years more than anywhere else, it's important to use these tips for a baby proof home to keep your child as safe as possible!
Try our tips for a baby proof home
Parents can only do so many things at once, and baby proofing a home helps parents get things done while having peace of mind that the baby will be okay. Here are the top 12 tips for a baby proof home.
Children are curious by nature. They want to explore everything, and that includes the holes in the electrical outlets. Many outlets are down low, right at a baby’s level. If the child were to stick his finger or another object into the outlet, he could get quite a shock. These events happen quickly, often when a parent looks away for a split second. Safeguarding the outlets with covers so the child cannot access them is vital.
There are many cords in any house, and you will need to inspect the placement of these cords. If any cords are out where the baby can reach them, they need to be moved. A child could trip on these cords, and if a baby pulls on the TV cord hard enough, the whole unit could topple over onto the child. Keep cords out of the way and out of reach so none of these dangers befall a child in your house.
If you have stairs in your home, you need to use tips for a baby proof home with a baby gate. Baby gates come in a variety of different styles, so they don’t have to stick out as an eyesore in the home anymore. They keep your child safe from toppling down the stairs when you are putting laundry away, for example. They can also be useful to keep children out of rooms that have dangerous items inside of them.
Children love to explore dirt and squeeze it between their fingers - sometimes they even like to taste them! Houseplants can be dangerous to a child’s health, so it is best to move the plants to a location where the child cannot get into them. Put smaller plants high up on shelves so the baby can’t reach them. Larger plants might need to go outside or into a room with the door closed so the child is safely kept away from the dirt.
There are a variety of dangerous items in cabinets, and children need to stay out of them in order to remain healthy. If you have a cabinet below your sink that has dish detergent, bleach, and other items, you either need to move those items up high or get cabinet locks that the child cannot open. Go through the house and get down onto the baby’s level to see what you can access. In the bathrooms, you need to lock up cleaners and make sure no medications are low enough for a child to reach.
One of the biggest tips for a baby proof home is to get a baby monitor and use it regularly. You will want to have the baby monitor on any time your child is alone in his room, even if he is asleep. You can also use the monitor when your child is alone and playing in his or her - room so you’ll hear if anything goes awry. It is a good idea to keep the level high enough that you will be alerted to anything out of the norm - don't forget to use a nanny cam if you're hiring a child minder, too.
Bumpers, blankets, stuffed animals and pillows are adorable, but you need to remove them from the crib. These items are fun for play time, but they can cause your child breathing distress overnight. Emptying the inside of the crib is absolutely vital for your child's safety. You can have hanging toys dangling over the crib so long as they are secure and fit for purpose; keep the cuddly items elsewhere in the nursery.
Watch Pet Food
If you have a pet, their food will be on the floor. Those tiny pieces of food can look like a snack to a baby, but they can often become a choking hazard. If you have a dog, feed him and put the bowl away right away when he’s done. If you leave food out for a cat, make sure it is in an area the baby cannot reach.
Playing in a toilet is not only gross, but the lid can slam a baby’s fingers very quickly. The open water can also be a drowning hazard. Lock the toilet for unsanitary exposure and accident prevention.
Some children love to play in the bathtub and a good soak in the tub is great, but soap and water can lead to slippery accidents, even when the parent is nearby. Stick some non-slip mats to the bottom of the tub to keep the baby safe and in place while he is getting clean.
Babies don’t lie on their backs forever. Eventually, they get up and start moving around. You will want to look at the sharp corners in your home and try to protect the child from bumping his head as much as possible. Put bumpers and rubber pads on things like coffee table corners, bathtub faucets and other dangerous, hard things that can catch a falling child on his way to the floor.
Once the baby is starting to stand, he will pull himself up on anything. You will need to secure your bookcases and other tall furniture with bolts into the wall so the baby won’t pull them over onto himself as he learns to stand and walk.