How To Babyproof Your Home
Exploring Their World
Once baby starts to crawl, you’re in for a lot of fun and surprises. From baby’s first steps to baby’s first climb, you’re going to have many moments of joy in your future. But with baby’s new mobility, there’s also a new sense of dread. How will you protect baby from bumping her head and touching things she’s not supposed to? Not to worry. With some advance planning, you can make your home a safe place for baby to explore.
Don't have a baby? Well then you're probably tuning in because you know someone who is having one, or maybe they already have one. In any case, these babyproof items would make for great baby gifts to keep their little ones safe.
Baby gates are a must if you live in a home with any stairs. You will need to put up a barrier to any potential falls. Even if you think baby will not venture far, gate off any stairs you have. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Baby gates range in size from standard doorway to sliding doors to larger openings. You can find ones that allow you to unhook a latch so you can walk through or you can plan to climb over a standard gate.
Today’s gates are safer than ever because they meet stringent safety regulations. Just be sure to install them securely.
Babyproofing Your Home (Video)
Coffee tables, counters and other pieces of furniture all have potentially sharp edges that baby can bang into. You can purchase foam or plastic tubes that clip onto your furniture so that if baby knocks into them, they won’t get hurt.
It’s a good idea to move any furniture you can into storage (extra end tables that could tip over, or a coffee table that takes up much of the room baby will need to run around in) so that there are even fewer dangers. Another option is to purchase special kids chairs for this age, with the hope that they stay away from mom and dads' chairs.
Babies can get themselves into all kinds of trouble with doorknobs left unguarded. You may quickly turn your back to answer the phone and baby will have opened a door to a room she’s not supposed to be in. This means trouble!
Discount stores sell doorknob locks that will require adult force to open. You’ll want one on every door.
For much of the house, it makes good sense to just close off rooms you don’t want baby in. But for high-traffic areas where baby will frequent often, especially the kitchen, you’re going to have to get busy child proofing.
Think like a baby. Get down on their level and look at the things they will be seeing. Does a tablecloth look tempting? Baby could pull a whole mess down on their head, so do away with it. Are there any cords hanging down from blinds? Tie them up so baby can’t get entangled.
Any loose objects or décor that baby could pull down off a shelf or table needs to be put into storage for the time being. Remove all knobs from the stove so that there are no accidental burns and store them up above. When you need to cook, just grab the knob you need and then remove it again when you’re done.
Kits are Great
Discount stores sell kits that contain all the locks you’ll need to baby proof most areas of your home. You’ll need latches on all lower cabinets in the kitchen and bathroom. You’ll also want to anchor any heavy book cases and bureaus to the wall.
Look for babyproofing kits that include furniture anchors. The toilet bowl and refrigerator are other areas you need to lock. Special toilet bowl and refrigerator locks come in these kits.
Keep your Eyes Open
There’s no amount of baby proofing that can substitute for your constant watch on baby. Toddlers are fast and can get themselves into trouble in an instant. Never leave a baby in a room by themselves. And instruct all caregivers to do the same. Take baby with you whenever you need to attend to a phone call or run to take the clothes out of the dryer.
Adventures in Babyproofing
Create a Baby-Safe Zone
Of course you want baby to be able to explore her surroundings. So create an area that is safe. Clean out one of the lower cabinets of your kitchen and fill it with pots and unbreakable bowls. Let her play with baby cups and kitchen themed toys. Make this their special cabinet. Since the others will be locked, they’ll be delighted to claim one for themselves.
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