Safety Tips: Childproofing Your Home!
Pooja Patel is an Architect by profession. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Arch (B.Arch.). She is an Architect at SDCPL – Gharpedia. Her writing weaves creative ideas and tips that offer a sustainable approach and informative content in the field of architecture and interiors. Apart from being blogger, she also participates in Architectural design & detailing at SDCPL. You can easily connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Instagram.
Do you have a child at home? Then you must be aware how important it is to provide a safe environment to your child. Childproofing, also called baby proofing is the act of making the surroundings or an object safer for the children. It may sometimes seem odd to childproof your home, particularly when your infant can’t even roll but don’t forget that he/she will be rolling around and start reaching out to things faster than you can imagine. So do not wait, take time to childproof your home when your little one has just arrived or when you are preparing to welcome your baby!
Childproofing your home is not an easy task but is essential to keep your baby safe. Curious minds of children always look for interesting elements to play right from climbing on kitchen counters to reaching out to cookie jars and experimenting with electronic gadgets and so on. Child would imitate parents and would enjoy doing whatever the parent does.
However, you don’t want to have an accident at any cost. Prevention is always better than cure to eliminate such injuries. Hence, take proper safety measures and follow the safety tips to keep your children safe at home.
The best way to begin childproofing your home is to get down on your hands & knees and see what your child sees or is able to see! It is the process which you need to repeat at regular intervals when your kids are in between 12 months to 5 years of age.
Basic Important Child Safety Tips
01. Talk with your children & teach them basic safety concerns.
02. Keep all the emergency numbers including your child’s pediatrician’s contact numbers on the fridge or stored into your phone in case of an accident!
03. Have Safety Gates for stairs, or at any other such areas which are to be restricted for kids.
04. Place Corner & Edge Guards or Bumpers at sharp corners of your home furniture.
05. Install Anti-scald Devices in your bathroom faucets for regulating hot water flow.
06. Install Door Stoppers & Door Holders to protect the child’s fingers & hands from getting caught and crushed in door.
07. Safety Netting for your windows and balconies to prevent your child from accidental falling.
08. Safety Locks and Latches (For drawers and Cabinets) are preferred by parents who want to put something simple on the cabinet door handles to prevent their children to open it.
09. Kids have a habit of chewing or putting toys or any other object lying on the floor in their mouth. Check the floor for small objects that a baby could swallow: pins, buttons, nails & coins.
10. Move plants off the floor as many are poisonous & they usually try to eat it.
11. Install Doorknob Covers & Door locks to prevent children from leaving the home.
12. Use Mobiles or Cordless Phones so you never have to leave your child unattended during your phone calls.
13. Outlet Covers & Outlet Plates: Make sure they are not easily removable and that they are large enough so the children won’t choke on them. These outlet covers and outlet plates are required for safety purposes to protect children from any exposed area of installed device e.g. Wall Lamp installed just above the floor where children can touch it. They can also be applied to switchboards and charging plug points in your house. They also serve the purpose of adding a finishing touch which can blend with your home décor.
14. Keep Smoke Detectors on every level of your home.
15. Place Carbon Monoxide Detectors near sleeping areas & at least 15 feet/ 4.6 meters, away from fuel-burning appliances.
Childproofing Different Rooms
01. Child Safety in Living/Bedroom
- Your child will learn to walk with support of the table edges. If edge of the table is sharp, children can get injured badly. Coffee tables, TV unit & even window ledges usually have plenty of sharp corners. You can use bumpers for protecting your children from those sharp edges.
- Make sure that all your furniture is balanced properly with floor. Unbalanced furniture can fall leading to accidents.
- Lock all the shutters of furniture which can be easily operated and opened using latches.
- TV on stands need to be anchored to the wall securely. If a child tries to climb on a TV stand, there is a chance that the set can fall on them.
- Shield your fireplace with the guard door, as kids could fall & injure themselves against a sharp or stony hearth. Use heat resistant gates while flames are burning. The door should be locked when not in use & also keep fire stoking tools and wood logs out of reach of children.
- Cover all lower height electrical outlets with outlets protectors.
- Place your photo frames out of reach, if your child knocks over or drops a frame, the glass can break and injure them. Try to mount them on the wall or replace your frames with plastic instead of wood or metal.
- Don’t place any furniture near your windows.
- In your bedroom, keep hairdryers & other tools unplugged & out of reach.
- Keep all type of body spray/perfumes, hair sprays, nail polish & remover, makeup, & other items out of the reach of children for your child’s safety.
02. Child Safety in Bathroom
- Install safety latches on cabinets & drawers.
- Keep bathroom cleaning supplies out of reach, locked in a cupboard or placed on a high shelf.
- Install a toilet lock to keep toilet lid closed, so little fingers don’t get damaged.
- Cover the tub spout to protect his head in case of fall. Rubber spout are good options to keep the spout covered.
- After baths, make sure that you mop up all the water on the floor. You can also use nonslip mats in &out of the tub as well as on floor of the bathroom for safety.
- Install anti-scald device on faucets & shower heads to prevent your child from burns & adjust your water heater temperature to 120 degrees F (48 C) to prevent scalding.
03. Child Safety in Kitchen
- Install safety latches in lower drawers & cabinets to keep children away from household products.
- Keep kitchenware, appliances, glass crockery& sharp things like knife and scissors out of reach and away from the edge of counters & tables where children can reach easily.
- Use back burners for cooking whenever possible & turn the handles of pots & pans toward the back of the stove.
- Use stove knob covers & oven door locks to prevent your child from touching it.
- Make lower cabinets more protected. Cleaning products like drains opener, dishwasher detergent, furniture polish and toxic chemicals should be locked away.
- Refrigerators are also not secure. If your child is able to pull your fridge open, install a latch. Keep choking hazard food like grapes, nuts and glass bottles out of sight or on high shelves.
- Don’t leave insect traps in places where your baby can reach them.
- Keep gas lighter/ matchbox etc. away and out of reach of children.
- Never have anything which can make his way easy to gas stove.
04. Other General Child Safety Tips for Your Home!
- Children are prone to fall. Safeguard your floors with rubber flooring especially where they spend most of the time so that they do not get hurt. It is an excellent choice for children to walk and play because it is a lot safer than any other flooring.
- Use safety gates at the top and bottom of the stairs. Never have your stair/balcony railing with horizontal members as children will always try to climb it! Design your railing with vertical members and place balusters with a minimum distance of approx. 4″.
- Assume a minimum height of 1.00m (3’3’’) for all your balcony and staircase railing and parapet wall on terrace. If existing height is low, raise the height with some temporary measures for few years.
- Only use doorknob covers to keep children away from hazardous area such as swimming pool. Be careful that these devices are easy for adults to use in emergency.
- Window grills: If you have low height window, make it safe by installing a window grill. Install window guards & window wedges to prohibit children opening windows. If you are living in a multi-storeyed apartment, always have safety grills in your windows.
- Cordless shades or cord cleats are the best ways to keep blinds safe for kids. Install permanent tie downs. Looped pull cords can also be cut into two strands, the end of which can be finished with tassels.
- Install safety locks in your main entrance door.
- If you have a bungalow with a swimming pool, ensure that it has a safety fence.
On a final note, if you have young children at home, childproofing or babyproofing is very important to keep them safe. Hope you find these home child-proofing tips handy.
Since you are already reading about child safety tips, we have also published wonderfully written & most readable blogs to design child’s bedroom: Things to Keep in Mind While Designing Children Bedroom
And before you take a leave, if you are really interested in knowing about your children posture dimensions and about design ideas for your kid’s study room, here you go…
4 Common Posture’s Dimension to Keep in Mind Before Designing Furniture for Children up to 5 to 16 Years
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