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Childproofing Your Home: Tips for Keeping Toddlers Safe

Toddler putting away toys

Your little one just took his first steps, and soon, he’ll run around the house. As fun as that is, the house can be a dangerous playground for toddlers. From sharp objects to hard corners, children have an uncanny ability to get into things when you least expect it. Learning how to baby proof house creates a secure environment for your little ones to explore, grow, and have fun. Let the childproofing begin with our baby proof checklist – safety first, adventures later!

Baby Proof Checklist

As you embark on your childproofing journey, take a close look at your home from a child’s point of view and identify potential hazards based on your child’s current development stage. The more mobile and curious your toddler is, the more he’ll explore the world around him and reach things that maybe he wasn’t able to reach before. Considering baby proofing house essentials, common hazard areas include the kitchen, living room, bathroom, and laundry room. Consider these things in each of the areas in your home with each new developmental stage:

Baby Gates

Until your crawler can safely navigate going up and down the stairs, take away the potential fall risk by installing a baby gate. Installing gates at the top and bottom of stairs, in doorways, and anywhere else that may pose a risk for your child to navigate on their own.

Outlet Covers

Electrical outlets can be incredibly tempting to curious children. Invest in outlet covers or plug protectors to prevent your child from poking objects, including tiny fingers, into the sockets. Additionally, consider cord management to reduce the risk of your child pulling or chewing on electrical cords.

Furniture

Climbing on unsecured bookshelves, dressers, TVs, or other furniture isn’t the kind of lesson in gravity we want our children to have. Make sure heavy items like these are anchored to the wall to prevent tipping over onto a child.

Cabinets and Drawers

Cabinets and drawers often contain chemicals, medicine, sharp objects, and other potentially dangerous items for toddlers. To babyproof cabinets, installing safety locks and latches is a crucial step to keep eager explorers from accessing these items.

Doors and Knobs

Prevent kids from wandering outside or into rooms they shouldn’t be in with door knob covers—consider them your pint-sized security squad. Exterior doors are especially important to secure especially if your home is near a busy street. Keeping doors closed or installing finger protection strips can prevent children from having their fingers pinched in doors.

Windows

Even if your window has a screen, screens aren’t enough to keep a child from falling out. Secure your windows with window guards or locks to ensure your child’s safety. Also, consider reorganizing your living space if you have furniture near windows that may make it easy for your child to climb and access them.

Toilet Locks

Toilet bowls can be a fascinating portal for small children, but they also pose a drowning risk. Install toilet locks to keep the lid closed and secure. Locks may also save you from treasures taking a surprise dive.

Appliances

Household appliances like stoves, ovens, and microwaves can be extremely dangerous. Prevent accidents with appliance locks and stove knob covers. When you’re using these appliances, be sure to keep hot items, boiling water, and pan handles out of your child’s reach to avoid mishaps and injury.

Fireplace and Heater Protection

Fireplaces, space heaters, and other items that generate heat can pose a burn risk to your child. Install fireplace screens or a hearth gate to create a barrier between your child and the heat source ensuring little hands cannot crawl near or touch the hot surfaces.

Furniture Edges

As toddlers start to run, it’s almost as if the furniture’s become a surprise obstacle course at head level. Turn your home into a toddler-friendly playground by adding soft corner guards to furniture edges, especially on tables and countertops.

Curtains and Blinds

Dangling cords from curtains and blinds can pose a strangulation hazard. Many modern blinds are cordless, but if your current blinds have cords, outfit them with cord wind-ups to keep the playtime safe and sound.

Outdoor Areas

A lot of times when parents baby-proof their home the focus is on the inside, but don’t forget to make the outside area safe too. Install fencing with childproof locks to keep your toddler from wandering off. Ensure yard care items are properly stored and secured. Look out for hives, dangerous spiders, and poisonous plants.

 

When to baby proof is just as important as knowing how. Childproofing your house is an ongoing process. As you baby proof your home for your child’s developmental stage, you’re not just making it safer; you’re creating a space for your little explorer to have fun and learn. From locking cabinets to adding soft corners, each step shows your love and commitment to keeping your child safe. Considering baby proofing house services can further ensure a secure environment, making your home a safer place for your child to explore, have fun, and learn without you having to worry as much about their safety.

Monica Schwarz Josten, M.D.

Monica Schwarz Josten, M.D.

Monica practices pediatrics in our Bluffdale office.

a happy father receives a kiss from his son

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