When you bring your new baby home she sleeps a lot, and you simply have to be sure that stuffed animals and blankets will not cover her nose, and that she sleeps on her back.
Nevertheless, as she starts to move, you begin to discover all the hazards in your home. She starts to put small items in her mouth, to play in the dog’s water bowl, to try to stand and fall over – many many times.
As she starts to crawl and then to toddle, she’ll be interested in everything. Here are some dangers to look out for.
Make sure every large body of water in your yard is protected. Swimming pools, hot tubs and ponds must have a safety fence. Make sure it’s one your child can’t climb or open, and train every older member of the household to keep the gate firmly shut. You can also get locking pool and jacuzzi covers.
Be aware of the water in the house as well. Water in buckets, the bathtub, the toilet and the pet bowl are all potential dangers. Shut doors might be enough, but if your child can access the area where water is, the best way to keep them safe is to always keep an eye on your child.
Stairs are an obvious baby and child risk. Install child safety gates at the top and bottom. Make sure they are firmly attached to the walls, and that the adults in the house remember to close the gates firmly when they use them.
Watch out for sharp corners as your child grows taller. You can pad them, use manufactured padded corners, or just watch your child closely! If you have slatted furniture, make sure your child can’t get his or head through the slats. Furniture with heavy items on them, such as a TV, and shelves, need to be secured to the wall, especially if your child is a climber.
Other areas of the home to baby-proof are wall outlets, extension cords, fireplaces, and blind and drape cords. Also, move plants or make sure the soil doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals. Always turn pan handles in on the stove, and don’t leave heavy items near the edge of tables. Be sure to use baby-proof locks on cupboard doors and drawers, especially in the kitchen, laundry and bathroom.
And the very best thing you can do for your child’s safety is to be aware of where they are and what they are doing.