So you’re having a baby, this bundle of joy you are welcoming into your family could be the best thing that’s ever happened to you! However, babies tend to have a mind of their own when wandering into mischief; therefore, it is important to be prepared to protect your baby. Here are 9 tips to baby proof your home to make this space safe for your child.
To baby proof your home, try thinking like a baby. If you were little, where would you wander off to? Places you would stick your head, fingers, and feet in? What things would you likely pick up and hold onto, what could you trip over or get hurt? Here are some of the baby proofing basics:
1. Secure the Baby’s Crib
Make sure you read instructions and secure everything correctly. This isn’t just any ordinary piece of furniture, the crib is where your baby will sleep every night! To prevent things such as suffocation, make sure you don’t add too many heavy blankets and pillows. Don’t forget to put the crib in an area away from windows, in order to avoid things like drafts, blinds and curtains.
2. Double Check to Make Sure Alarms/Detectors Work
In your baby-less world, you may have unplugged the smoke detectors because they were a nuisance. Maybe you’re sick of some of your home detectors disrupting your beauty sleep. However, these little details that may not have had an influence on you in the past, are golden for when your home is going to support a baby. It’s time to make sure all alarms and detectors are working, they will help you keep your baby safe, and you at ease of mind.
3. Make Sure to Cover Electrical Outlets
To avoid electrical shock, cover all the electrical outlets you think your baby may get a hold of. As for outlets that are most often in use, make sure the cords are always plugged in and aren’t hanging on their own or in arms reach of your precious baby.
4. Secure Your Shelves
Babies tend to crawl, climb and hang onto things in order to support themselves. Therefore, something you should do as a new parent would be to secure all the shelves, bookcases and stands in your home. Things such as artworks or hanging picture frames must be securely placed around the house to make sure your child won’t get hurt because an item is not intact.
5. Window Guards
No matter what type of windows you have, make sure they’re baby proof. Window guards are a great option to secure your windows. As well, window stops work for sliding and hung windows. For sliding windows, a charley bar also works, for casement windows, just remove the crank handles. Window film for the home was suggested by the International Window Film Association. The executive director of IWFA stated how untreated windows may only block 25% of harmful UV rays. Window film can be a good idea to protect your baby from harmful sun damage since it is not advised for babies to wear sunscreen.
6. Get Dangerous Objects Out of the Way
As your common sense has already told you to lock away weapons such as guns and knives, make sure to remember the everyday items that may be dangerous to a child. Household items like electrical cords, matches, alcohol, chemicals and heaters should be out of reach for your child. You can purchase child safety drawers and cabinet locks; they are effective, cheap and life-saving for your child. It’s a good idea to hid objects that are small such as buttons, batteries, clips and nails in order for your child not to accidentally choke on them.
7. Door Jambs and Safety Gates
Try to install safety gates that bolt to the wall rather than pressure gates, they are safer and more secure, especially at the top of stairwells. In order to prevent pinched fingers, you can use door stops, door holders or door jambs on doors and door hinges.
8. Edge Guards
Although edge guards can look tacky, they can save your child’s eyes and prevent injury. Glass tables and any furniture with sharp edges should be covered with bumpers for your baby to move freely around the house. If edge guards don’t fit your furniture, make sure to move the dangerous furniture to an area not in the baby’s reach.
9. Hazardous Areas Should Be Blocked Off
Although you are adding a baby to your home, it should still be able to function normally; block off certain rooms in your home that are off limits to your baby. This could be the garage, kitchen, backyard, or even a bathroom. Secure these gates by covers, close the doors, and just remember to think ahead of your child, in order to keep them safe!
Communicate with the whole family! Make sure everyone is dedicated to making the home baby friendly, while maintaining its everyday functions. But most importantly, make sure to savour every moment you have with this new bundle of joy addition to your home!