Baby safety is a serious issue around my house. It seems that once babies start crawling, they want to explore everything – especially the most dangerous things.
Below are the top baby safety hazards that might be in your home, and what you can do to make them safer.
- The Stairs
- Your bed
- Your home water heater
- Your coffee cup
- Below are the top 10 best selling baby safety products on the market:
- Baby Safety Tips You May Not Know About
- Naptime safety tips
- Baby Car Safety Tips
- Nursery Safety Tips
- Baby Toy Safety Tip
- Keep your Eyes on The Baby
- Holiday Safety Tips for Your Baby
- How to Keep Your Child Safe from Electrical Outlets?
- How To Childproof Your Nursery
Every six minutes, a child falls down the stairs in the United States and is taken to the emergency room. Your home’s stairs are the number one safety hazard for your child. Even one or two steps can prove dangerous, especially for new crawlers and walkers. Install baby gates in front of all stairs in your home (both at the top and bottom of the stairs). Be sure to use hardware-mounting gates, and avoid pressure gates, which present safety hazards themselves.
A quarter of stair-related injuries for children age one or younger occur when an adult is carrying the child on the stairs. It’s important to remember never to hold another object while you are giving your baby on the stairs.
It’s nice to snuggle with your baby in bed, but avoid keeping your baby in bed with you while you sleep. I know this is controversial because many parents love the ease and intimacy of co-sleeping, but the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against it. Infant injuries and death result from parents accidentally rolling on the baby, or from the baby getting into a wrong position in the bed (for example, face against a pillow or head wedged between mattress and headboard).
Beds also present a hazard for the newly mobile baby. It’s tempting to set your baby on the bed while you take care of something, but just don’t do it. The second your baby can roll; he can also fall off the bed.
With that said, you can use the baby monitor to ensure the safety of your child when sleeping in the nursery.
Pools are great fun for kids, but they are also highly dangerous. I’ve seen a two-year-old nearly drown in a neighbor’s pool, even with adults all around. It can happen in seconds. Ensure that your in-ground pool is gated correctly, or that your above-ground pool ladder can be locked up and away from curious kids.
Even if your home doesn’t have a pool, nearby pools can still pose a safety hazard. Ask your neighbors to install these safety features on their pools if they don’t have them already.
Your home water heater
A child will get third-degree burns from exposure to 140-degree water for just three seconds. Most home water heaters (especially older ones) reach temperatures of 140 degrees or hotter. What can you do to prevent burns? Set your water heater to 120 degrees. If you can’t change your water heater setting, purchase an anti-scald device for your faucet.
Your coffee cup
It’s gut-wrenching to think that you could be the cause of an injury to your child, but it’s entirely possible – especially if you are holding a cup of hot coffee. Many child burns result from parents trying to juggle both their coffee mug and their baby. If you want to sip your java, make sure your baby is safely on the ground, in its carrier, or strapped into the stroller or high chair. Or go for the iced coffee instead.
It is better to be safe than sorry any day. This is one of the reasons why you need to be armed with the proper items that help to enhance safety, especially when you have children in the house.
Below are the top 10 best selling baby safety products on the market:
1. Instant numbers– this is a thermometer that comes in handy every time you feel like the kid’s fever is rising, it comes with an insertion guard to show when it is in the right place, beeps when it is through and glows red when the temp is too high.
2. No metal bars– this comes in handy for older kids who like to climb. They are beautifully designed windows without bars that enhance the safety of your windows as well as blend in well with your décor.
3. Humidifier– babies need to breathe in clean air all the time to avoid congestion, which can be achieved using a humidifier. This is beneficial as it can help ease dry skin, sinus irritation, and coughs.
4. First year’s gate– this is a high safety product that offers easy access to both children as well as adults, especially if you do not want them to wander off into another section of your house where they could come into harm’s way. This can be opened easily by the parent when carrying the child and other items because it only needs nudging with the knee and stepping on it with your foot.
5. Aspirator– this makes it on the top ten best selling baby safety products because it is your best friend when you have a stuffy nose during the wee hours of the night. You should get one that is battery operated as it is more effective than the manual ones.
6. Hearth gate– this is an excellent product that is placed around the fireplace to avoid burns, which can be very traumatizing to the kids. Be sure to get a strong one that is heat resistant so that it can carry out its duties effectively.
7. Sock resistant sockets– parents need to get these as soon as their kids start moving because they are usually very curious and are most likely going to try to poke their fingers or toys in places that they are not supposed to. The sockets help them to avoid getting shocked.
8. Staircase gates– this is very important if you do not want to hear that the child has rolled over the staircases. They usually are easy to mount and help the kids stay put.
9. Baby monitor– this is especially important if you want to take a sneak peek of the baby while the precious one is sleeping. It also alarms you as soon as they have woken up so that you do not leave them alone for too long regardless of the part of the house that you are in. We have written a detailed guide on how to choose the best baby monitor.
10. Crib rail teethers– these also make it on the top 10 best selling baby safety products because children like to nibble on stuff, and this is a safe option that they can bite.
Baby Safety Tips You May Not Know About
Isn’t your baby the most precious? You would do everything to ensure your baby’s safety. However, there may be some baby safety tips that would be useful and help you further ensure that your baby comes to no harm.
Outlined below are some of the areas of focus that you need to keep in mind.
Naptime safety tips
Naptime is very important for your baby, and ensuring that your baby wakes up alive and unharmed should be your priority. Never place any toys in your baby’s crib when he is in it sleeping, because toys have been known to choke babies when they turn while asleep accidentally. Dress your child in warm clothes when it is cold but never cover them with extra blankets because they might suffocate in their sleep.
You could also allow some headspace when you place them in their crib and cover the headboard with soft padding to ensure that your baby doesn’t bang their head. Make sure the soft padding of the headboard is fitted snugly to prevent your baby from pulling it free and choking on it. The mattress should snugly fit the crib to prevent the baby from getting stuck, and the crib posts shouldn’t be widely spaced to avoid the baby from meeting their tiny hands through and getting stuck.
Baby Car Safety Tips
Taking safety precautions while traveling with a baby can save your baby’s life. One essential care is ensuring that your baby is comfortably seated in a proper car seat. Ensure that it is firmly fitted in your car, and if your baby is below two years, let their car seat face the rear and only shift to forward-facing when they get older.
Replace the car seat as soon as your baby outgrows it or when his weight is more than the car seat can support. Keep checking on your baby frequently when you place his car seat in the back seat to make sure he is alright and always drive carefully.
Nursery Safety Tips
The nursery is one place where the baby will spend most of his time. Make sure it is the safest place in the home for your baby. You could start by ensuring that the crib is as far away from the window as possible because the drapery or mini blind cords can cause strangulation if the baby reaches out for them. Never hung picture frames or mirrors above the crib to prevent the child from reaching out and knocking them off.
You could also keep the crib far from any electrical appliances, and no cords should be left hanging for the baby to pull or chew. Ensure that no furniture is placed under windows because the little explorers love to climb; they are likely to use the furniture as a ladder to jump to the window and fall below. Firmly secured to the wall any furniture that is likely to topple, such as dressers, bookcases, and so on to prevent accidents.
Baby Toy Safety Tip
Buy safe toys for your baby to play with. Never buy toys that are small enough for them to swallow or choke on. Toys with strings or cords are a no-no because they are strangulation hazards. Buy soft stuffed animals or other harmless toys that are unlikely to break or hurt your baby as they play with them.
Keep your Eyes on The Baby
Lastly, never leave your baby unattended. They should be watched at all times because babies are often very unpredictable, and you never know when they will decide to go for the very thing that will harm them.
Holiday Safety Tips for Your Baby
Your baby is your most cherished and valued possession, and his safety can never take backseat irrespective of any reason.
Babies keep us on toes 24 x 7 x 365, so it is essential to follow specific safety tips while preparing for holidays.
Holiday and festival are the time when you cannot keep yourself stuck to your angel as some chores need to be taken care of. So, it is advisable to arrange things in such a way that you need not run behind the baby to prevent the arrangement from going bizarre.
Follow these tips that make holidays stress-free and very relaxing in terms of managing babies during the festive season:
- Tabletop tree: Christmas tree is the heart of the festival, but if it is exposed to the danger of getting damaged by the baby’s inquisitiveness, it turns out to be a significant hindrance in enjoying the festival. Hence, arrange for a tabletop tree that is out of reach of the children and very easy to maintain too. The use of shock-proof materials in decorating the tree can be a sage decision if the very active baby is to be taken care of. Use fluorescent decorative papers instead of bulbs as these also illuminate appropriately in dim light.
- Prepare baby proof food: Several foods may choke the baby. Nuts, candies or caramels may be things of discomfort for the baby; so, make sure that these are sealed nicely as soon as served to the guests. Also, do engage your kid while you bake the food as it is fun for him too. But make sure that you do not overcook the food as it may upset the baby’s stomach.
- Adopt safe lighting methods: Decorating a house with lights is a widespread practice. It is, therefore, necessary to ensure that the switches are out of children’s reach, and all the sockets are covered with some sealants or objects so that they stay away from such areas. It is also necessary to put off the fire when the fireplace is not in use. Learn more about child safety with electrical outlets.
- Use sturdy table cloths: Babies have a common practice of taking the table cloth off while moving away from the table. Hence, it is essential to use such table cloth that does not hang from the sides. Also, do a practice to stash food in the cupboards, and your child can create sealed storage space in place of the tabletop as a very messy scene if he disturbs the table setting.
- Keep the baby gear ready: You want to travel, and you have a baby in hand. Last-minute packing can prove to be a very foolish idea as you are prone to forget many important things that you may require for your baby. Hence, start collecting items and arrange them in the baby bag as soon as the traveling is planned.
Holidays are meant to have fun and cultivate pleasant memories. Little care and caution can undoubtedly help you have safe and enjoyable holidays. Just keep your mind open and always carry baby factor in mind while preparing for the holidays.
How to Keep Your Child Safe from Electrical Outlets?
Electrical safety is something that children should be taught early on as they are exposed to electrical devices, outlets, and cords daily.
Teaching them about the dangers posed by electrical devices both indoors and outdoors is essential for their safety. You need to lay down specific ground rules regarding the use of electrical gadgets so that they stay safe at all times.
Teaching Kids the Basics
When kids learn about electricity and how it is used, they will accept your rules in a better way. Here are some tips:
- Help them understand the method by which heat is passed on by pointing to the power lines that are seen in your vicinity. They should be made aware of the dangers posed by downed wires.
- The power outlets inside the home should be explained to them. You should impress upon them that only the power plugs should go inside the outlets and not their fingers or toys.
- Covering the outlets with plastic covers is also an excellent way to prevent kids from touching them. This is useful, especially if you have toddlers in your home.
- Cords that are frayed or in which the wires are exposed should be changed immediately as kids learn the use of power cords at an early stage and generally plug the cables themselves. Teaching them not to use the cord if it is damaged is necessary to prevent injury.
Use of Power Cords
While preschoolers and toddlers need to be kept away from all types of electrical outlets and cords, older kids can be taught to use the cable in a safe manner possible. In case of using an extension cord, you need to show them that plugging in too many at a time can cause overheating and lead to the cord catching fire. They should be told to stay away from cords that are on the floor. The wires, whenever handled, should be done with dry hands only. Ensure that the kids understand the perils of water coming in contact with electricity.
Protection during Emergencies
Kids need to be taught the way to deal with electrical emergencies. In case of a power outage, they need to stay still till you go and get them. Flashlights should always be kept handy to help in such situations. Kids need to avoid fallen power lines on the road or outside your home and also inform you about it immediately. And in case of a storm, they should be told to avoid trees and playground equipment that is made of metal.
Keeping all the electrical cords, outlets, and appliances safe and in good working condition will prevent most of the accidents that kids get into. Having a proper power circuit with cut off-limits in case of electrical surges or drops is necessary for every home. All members of the family should know how to use electricity in a safe manner possible. Kids need to be made aware of all aspects of electrical use from the toddler stage itself. This will make them more cautious and prepared, thus avoiding risks of electrical injury to a great extent.
How To Childproof Your Nursery
It is essential to think about your child’s safety while preparing your nursery. Even if you are a watchful parent, you may not keep your child completely out of harm’s way every second. Childproofing your nursery can eliminate any constant worry you may have about your child’s well-being.
A well-childproofed nursery can prevent unintentional injury, which is the leading cause of death in toddlers. Since kids explore their everyday environments, its crucial to check things from your child’s perspective to ensure the nursery is safe.
Scope the territory by looking at what’s within reach, whats tempting, and where you would go if you could walk, crawl or toddle. You can create a safe nursery while at the same time provide an attractive, entertaining, and loving environment for your child.
Ensure you choose the right crib as it is one of the most dangerous pieces of baby furniture. Purchase a crib that meets national safety standards. Refrain from using an older crib because it may not meet today’s safety standards.
The crib should have no more than 2 3/8 inches of space between the spindles.
Use cloth bumper or vinyl to keep your child from hitting against the side of the crib. Test the drop-side latches to ensure the baby cannot open them. The locks should be safe from unintentional release.
Make sure the walls are free from lead. Breathing in lead dust or fumes or swallowing anything with lead in it may poison your child. A lead abatement professional can tell you if your walls are safe.
If they aren’t safe, you should remove the lead paint and cover the walls with enamel or plastic-based paint. A water-resistant wallpaper can also be a suitable choice.
Purchase a mattress that fits snugly against the crib. Your child may suffocate if his or her head is caught between the bed and the crib.
If you can fit two fingers between the mattress and the crib, you should purchase a slightly bigger mattress.
The mattress hangers should be secured in hooks to the corner posts. Discard any plastic covering that may come with the mattress before placing it on the crib. The bed should not allow your child to leave the crib.
Your nursery should have smooth, washable rugs. The levels should not attract dust or dirt easily. If you choose to put a carpet on the floor, you should avoid thick, bushy carpets. Such rugs can create the best environment for dust, dirt, small particles, food, and even mites and insects.
Toys and mobiles
Avoid entertainment toys and mobiles that have strings. Toys with small detachable parts can pose a danger to your child. This is because your child can remove and swallow the small removable parts. You should remove the mobiles as soon as your child can push up on his knees and hands.
Use safety covers for electrical outlets. Install drawer and cabinet locks as well as window guards. Pick small objects off the floor and remove any furniture with sharp edges.