Top 5 Ways to Baby Proofing Your Home
So you're finally settling in to a routine, your little one is sleeping through the night and is starting to get comfortable with more solid foods. Things are starting to settle down and you feel like you're regaining control of your life. You're acing it as a parent and are starting to wonder what all the fuss is about...
Until one day they start to crawl…and suddenly your home feels as though there are potential dangers at every corner! It’s time to baby-proof the house.
With accidents being the leading cause of death in children over the age of 1, it really is incredibly important to ensure that your home is a safe haven for your little one.
This can seem like a daunting task but luckily there are some really simple but effective ways of baby proofing your home which are convenient and easy.
The classic safety feature that has been around for decades and prevented countless accidents.
Yes they can take some getting used to at first, but there's a plethora of designs available on the market so it's relatively simple to find one that suits your home and lifestyle.
Baby gates are incredibly useful, as although most people think immediately of their uses on stairs to prevent climbing and falls they are also handy for blocking off rooms that you’d rather your child was kept out of – such as the kitchen.
We kept using ours until our children were just past the toddler stage both at the top and bottom of the stairs and to 'fence off' the kitchen. These simple devices bring a lot of peace of mind and can really help prevent serious accidents.
Making sure cables, wires etc are out of reach and secured where possible
As well as being aware of wires and cables that are around the floor area, you need to pay extra attention to any that hang down to within babies reach too – as they will soon start to yank on things.
You’re looking for anything that will result in a heavy or dangerous item falling on to them, such as toaster and kettle cables etc, as well as anything that presents a risk of baby becoming entangled such as long cables from blinds.
There are a number of products on the market such as covers and clips to tidy away cables, keeping them out of reach and keeping your children safe.
It may be worth taking a crawl tour around your home to see just what is in reach of babies hands and you may be shocked to find just how many dangers there really are.
Use guards or padding on corners and edges of tables
A coffee table or TV cabinet with pointed edges has danger written all over it for little ones once they start to scoot around.
The solution is very simple, either purchased or even home made pads can easily be applied to any edges or corners in your home. The store bought variety are often affixed with Velcro, or plastic studs, so after your little one is old enough to know better you can remove the guards.
You can make your own pads from suitably cushioned materials or fabric and even use double sided tape to affix things to furniture; like most safety hacks around the home, the solution is surprisingly simple.
Keeping cabinets and cupboards closed with a suitable baby lock
This is done for a number of reasons; such as to prevent jammed fingers and to keep dangerous items such as cleaning products out of the hands of your little one.
Fitting approved safety standard cupboard locks to cabinets and cupboards is a must. These small plastic devices are cheap to buy, easily fitted and can help prevent any parents worst nightmare.
It’s also worth ensuring that windows and balcony doors have suitable child locks to prevent falls.
Anchor your fittings firmly to the wall
Just as low hanging cables can become climbing ropes, your tall furniture will inevitably become a climbing frame to small children. They will look upon your furniture as a mountaineer might look upon Kilimanjaro and think 'I can do that.'
Anchoring large items to the walls with suitable safety brackets is relatively easy to do and most new furniture comes with brackets designed for this purpose.
If you purchase something that doesn't come with these fittings then they can be easily purchased from a local DIY store, or even online. They are pretty inexpensive and they prevent so many horrific accidents each year.
So that's five of the ways in which we helped baby proof our home, and touch wood, so far there's been no serious accidents or injuries caused to our children through their errant adventures in toddlerdom.
What's the best hack you've tried for baby proofing your home? And what advice would you give to new parents to help prevent accidents? I'd love to read them so please put your comments below!
Hayley McLean is a hypnotherapist, a mum of 3 young children, and a blogger. After having 3 babies in the space of 3 years, Hayley uses her blog to share her experiences and tips for parents everywhere on all aspects of family life and raising children.