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How to Make your Home Safe for Children



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How to Make your Home Safe for Children

What would you do to ensure the safety of your child? Would you allow your three year old to cross the street without supervision? Would you allow your nine year old to drive your new car? Of course not, because more than any concern that you have with property damage, you are more concerned with the safety of your child.

According to the United States National Safety Council, roughly, 45 percent of unintentional child injuries and death in the home are caused by falls, choking, drowning, fire and poisoning. In most cases, such tragedies could have been prevented if only a few minor childproofing precautions had been in place. The purpose of this guide is to help reduce that number by providing a comprehensive plan on how to childproof your home.


How to Make your Home Safe for Children

When childproofing your home, it is best to use a systematic method for identifying the areas in which a curios toddler could be injured. One of the basic steps in this process would to kneel down (at toddler height) in each room in your home while patiently scanning the area for items that could be easily reached by your child while employing the use of a childproofing checklist. The checklist will help you to avoid overlooking those basic areas that can result in disastrous situations if left unsecured. For the purpose of this guide, we will use a checklist based off of a room by room approach.

Kitchen


While the kitchen for most families is a source of great food and lasting memories, for a small child it can be a dangerous playground. The height of young children puts them at the perfect level to grab knobs, burners and other dangerous household items. To ensure that your childs memories are only filled with laughter, make sure to secure the following items by installing the suggested correlating protective devices and taking the necessary steps:

  • Stove/Oven – To prevent burns, when cooking, place child in a high chair or playpen and turn all pot handles inward or use back burners.
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  • Refrigerators – contain many items that pose choking hazards and they are airtight, which could cause a child to suffocate if they managed to crawl inside and shut the door.

  • Cabinets – are common storage places for items such as cleaning supplies and medicines. To prevent poisoning, always store medicines in overhead cabinets and place safety locks on lower cabinet doors and drawers.
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  • Loose décor items – situate glass items on shelves out of the reach of a small child and away from the edge of counters

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Living Room


Before ever being able to take a step, small children will roll, scoot and crawl toward any item they believe is within reach. The living room, a common place for entertaining needs to be a place of secure refuge to prevent injury.

  • Front door – as children learn to walk, they will see the front door as a pathway into a brand new world. To prevent your child from exiting your home without supervision or permitting an unwelcome guest entrance, install a safety door knob cover.

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  • Windows – to prevent a window or sliding door from opened install a window/patio door lock.

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  • Fireplace – Fireplaces have rough edges and small objects that children can choke on and of course when a fireplace is hot, there is always a risk for burns. To prevent injury install a fireplace gate and corner edge guards.

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  • Electrical Wires – are usually connected to large objects and can easily be pulled down by babies. To prevent injury, utilize a cord bundler and secure to furniture to prohibit cords from being pulled.

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  • Curtain and Blinds Cords – are major choking hazards as it may become possible for the strings to become entangled around a child’s neck. It is very important to ensure that blind cords are far out of the reach of children.

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  • Tables – Coffee tables are often the focal points in many living rooms; but for a child, especially one that is learning to walk it is a support system. To prevent injury on the sharp edge of a table, install a table guard. In addition, remember to remove objects that pose a potential choking and burn hazard.

Bathroom


Apart from bathing and potty training, the bathroom is an extremely dangerous part of the home for a small child. Remember when bathing your child to never ever leave a child unattended. Even in the smallest amounts of water a child is at risk of drowning.

  • Bathroom cabinet – are common storage places for items such as cleaning supplies and medicines. To prevent poisoning, always store medicine in overhead cabinets with safety locks secured. In addition, remember to install safety locks on lower cabinet doors and drawers as well.

  • Bathtub – To prevent children injuring themselves on a sharp bathtub faucet, install a soft scout (faucet) cover.

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  • Toilet – Little children are generally fond of playing in water no matter how unsanitary the water is so to prevent ingestion unpleasant toilet water, consider installing a Sure Fit Toilet Lock.

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Bedroom


Common injuries occur in the bedroom. As tempted as you may be, never leave a child sleeping unattended in a bed designed for adults. At nap time, it is always best to lie the child down on its back in a crib with secured guard rails to prevent falls. In addition, never allow your child to sleep on waterbeds or pillow, this could result in suffocation.

  • Loose décor items – situate glass items on shelves out of the reach of a small child and away from the edge of counters

  • Windows – to prevent a window or sliding door from opened install a window/patio door lock.

  • Doors – to prevent your child from entering rooms against your wishes, install door cover.

  • Electrical outlets – small children display an almost magnetic attraction for sticking their little fingers or other objects into holes; to prevent electrical shock, it is safe to always secure unused electrical outlets with safety covers.

  • Smoke Detectors - According to the United States Fire Administration, “two thirds of home fires that kill children happen in homes that have no smoke detectors. Infants and toddlers are especially susceptible to the dangers of fire and smoke, since they are often elevated in cribs where smoke can rise and are unable to escape a fire on their own.” To keep your child safe, install smoke detectors throughout your home, especially in the kitchen, hallways and bedroom areas.

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  • Swimming Pool Safety - To prevent a curious child from wandering off toward a swimming pool or Jacuzzi, install a security gate fencing in all recreational or decorative bodies of water.

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  • Indoor Security Gate - A common tool to use to prevent a youngster from venturing off into an area that is off limits or climbing stairs without supervision is an indoor security gate. Generally indoor security gate adjust to fit a variety of entry and doorways.

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As discussed, it is imperative to keep your home child safe and reduce the risks of injury to your child. It is best to use a systematic method for identifying the areas in which a curios toddler could be injured. By employing the use of a how to make your house safe guide as you assess the dangers in each room in your home, you will diminish the possibility of overlooking anything. Remember, in most cases, tragedies such as falls, choking, drowning, fire and poisoning, could have been prevented if only a few minor childproofing precautions had been in place.

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