Childproofing Your Home 101

Ideally, the best time to childproof your home is before your baby starts crawling. But before anything else, you’ll need to identify the safety hazards that are present in order to know what to modify and install in humble your abode. Getting to your child’s level does the trick.

[ photo: by caleb woods ]

Once you’ve made a list of potential household hazards, you can then proceed to carrying out the necessary safety measures to keep your children protected in their own homes at all times.

Mount and Hang

When you have a child at home, photo frames and TV sets should be kept out of the way. You don’t have to get rid of these items entirely; you just have to make sure that they are out of your kids’ reach.

One convenient way to do this is to hang picture frames instead of letting them stand on tabletops or glass cabinets. The last thing you want is to have glass shattered all around your floor each time your child drops a frame.

In the case of TV sets, it’s best to mount them securely on the wall, as TVs on stands risk your children of toppling over the moment they start climbing the furniture.

Install Brackets and Anchors

Unintentional injury is one of the leading causes of child mortality in the US. But thankfully, it can be eliminated through the right preventive measures. To keep heavy furniture from tipping and falling over, secure them with brackets and anchors to walls. This is especially useful in cupboards, bookcases, and other shelving types that are used to store multiple items and articles.

Another precaution is to make sure that cabinet doors are functional and can be tightly closed. Having broken doors may put your kids at risk of getting hurt from falling objects.

Secure Electrical Outlets

Electrical outlets are found everywhere in the house, and they are especially dangerous in the bathroom due to the presence of a water source. Make sure to cover these outlets with safety caps or protectors. It helps to update your outlets with ground fault circuit interrupters, as these devices turn off the electricity if an appliance falls into the water.

When it comes to toilets, it’s a safety precaution to install toilet locks to keep lids closed when not in use. Toddlers can easily topple over and can drown in just an inch of water.
To prevent plumbing problems and to spare your kids from more potential hazards, you can also install a Saniflo toilet, which is an easy-to-install option that uses upflush technology instead of relying on gravity. In case your kid accidentally drops pieces of paper in the toilet, the toilet’s macerator will grind the item finely, avoiding clogs and possible leaking that may occur as a result of such clogs.

Secure Kitchen Clutter

The kitchen is one of the rooms that are filled with safety hazards. While installing a gate in your kitchen can keep your kids off-limits, it’s best to still childproof everycorner of the area as much as you can.

Cleaning products, such as detergents, drain openers, and furniture polish, are often found in the lower cabinets of the kitchen, and these chemicals are usually toxic hazards for your little ones. Make sure to secure your cabinet doors with a magnetic lock or even just the traditional lock. If that’s not possible, place these substances high up where your children can’t reach them.

One common mistake that parents make is placing a butcher block of knives just on top of the counter when it should be secured in an above-the-counter cabinet. This can put your kids at risk, especially if you have a child with special needs, as they can be more impulsive and may grab all kinds of things.

Safety First

You know what they say. Better safe than sorry, especially when it involves your children’s safety. There are countless ways to keep your home as child-friendly as possible. Still, the best thing to do is to always keep an eye on your little ones and to attend to them as much as you can.

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