Babyproofing your home is essential for your kids’ safety and your peace of mind. For expectant parents, it may be overwhelming trying to prepare the house before the new baby arrives. Here are a few tips to make your living spaces safer for small children.
What Do I Need for Babyproofing a Home?
To get started babyproofing, take a child’s-eye view of the home. From the floor, look around and try to detect items that could pose a hazard. Are there electrical cords that may be within a baby’s reach? Do power outlets need covers? Check your window blinds to see if the cords are retractable or if you’ll need to tie them up. Look for houseplants, heavy furniture, and hazardous chemicals.
Babyproofing is an ongoing process. The measures you take now may not apply to your child once they start crawling or walking. Be prepared for a clever toddler to outsmart your safety measures.
Ideas to Help with Babyproofing Your Home
Doors, Windows, and Decks
- Install window stops to keep windows from opening more than a few inches.
- Use cordless blinds because cords pose a safety hazard.
- Keep your child’s bed or crib away from the window.
- Make sure windows are locked when they are closed.
- Mark glass doors with colorful stickers to prevent kids from running into them.
Electrical Outlets and Cords
- Use a hide-a-cord device or keep electrical cords behind furniture.
- Cover unused outlets to keep kids from putting fingers or objects in them.
- Make sure storage chests have air holes in them in case a child becomes trapped inside.
- Keep drawers closed and latched so kids don’t use them as ladders.
- Anchor floor lamps so kids cannot pull them over.
- Mount your TV on the wall.
- Secure furniture to the wall with straps.
- Attach cushioned guards on all sharp corners and hard edges.
Babyproofing the Fireplace in Your Home
Keep matches and fireplace tools out of reach. Install a fireplace screen and position it appropriately when the fireplace is in use. If you have a brick fireplace, add an edge guard to protect small children from falls.
Other Potential Household Hazards
To prepare your home for small kids, there are a few other safety precautions you should take. Keep medications and alcohol in upper cabinets out of the reach of children. Install childproof locks on cabinets that hold cleaners, paints, and other chemicals. Make sure the doors to the garage and swimming pool are equipped with childproof latches.
Babyproofing your home protects children from hazards around the house. Prepare the house before you bring your baby home from the hospital.