How to Baby Proof Your Home and Floors
Baby proofing your home is essential, we all know how hazardous it can be when they’re learning about the world. On average, babies start to crawl at seven months, where they will soon start pulling up on chairs, tables, cupboards and anything they can get a hold off. Then before you know it they’ll be walking around the home with nothing to stop them.
With all that in mind, here’s a few tips and reminders to try and make sure your home has all the safety basics covered.
We would recommend putting aside a weekend to go through your home room by room to make sure it’s baby safe. It may not even take you that long once you have established what needs to be done. It would give you peace of mind knowing that you abode was safe for when you little one comes into the world. And of course, like their school clothes, sports gear and food consumption, don’t forget to keep updating your home as your child grows.
The overall home
Let’s first consider how safe your home is in general. Be sure to keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen and fire alarms on every floor of your house. It’s also vital to fix baby gates at the top and bottom of every staircase and ensure all electrical outlets are covered. If you have blinds, we would always advise to go for cordless, as all cords on blinds and curtains are a strangling hazard.
From a floor and rugs point of view, make sure the rugs are held down with non-slip pads (or underlays) and keep them always vacuumed and clean, so baby won’t find anything embedded in them.
This is the room where you are most likely to get distracted. Whether it be cooking or cleaning, you’re sure to have your back turned at some point. Therefore, we need to make sure this room is baby proofed to the max so no untoward trouble can occur.
First, you need to reorganise. Any cleaning supplies or detergents you have in low cabinets need to be moved to the very top cabinets, instead. On top of this, all bottom cabinets should have safety latches, but even with these on, these cabinets should only contain things which are safe for your baby to potentially find.
Plastic containers, pots, pans, etc. would potentially be fine. The same applies for drawers, any sharp objects or plastic, paper bags should be moved to the higher drawers.
Any vitamins, supplements or medication need to be kept in a hard-to-reach cabinet or drawer with a safety latch on. To a curious child, all items like this look like sweets, but be aware, child safety caps are not 100% effective as they just slow a very persistent child down.
If you have any objects such as magnets or small decorative items, these should all be placed up high too as they are choking hazards. Also, always unplug small appliances such as kettles, toasters, coffee pots when not being used, making sure the cables are not left to dangle.
The Living Room
Within the Living room, the biggest dangers to your baby are collisions or falling over. So, with that in mind, you would need to start adding edging and cushioned corner guards to all coffee and side tables, plus any hearths or other sharp-cornered surfaces.
When the children are able to climb on furniture, you’ll need to upgrade your furniture asap. You will now need to move all furniture away from windows, and this is to prevent babies climbing and falling out. Then any bookshelves need to be mounted to walls so they cannot topple over and fall on your baby.
Attach your TV to the entertainment centre or table securely, so the baby can’t pull it down. All ornaments and items of décor can be hazardous so if you don’t want the baby playing with them, store them out of reach or out of sight.
In preparation for the baby, it’s also time to ditch the old carpet and rugs and in with the new stain resistant ones. There are huge amounts on the market now, so make sure when shopping around you chose a material right for the upcoming new addition.
As well as stain resistant, you want your rug to be durable and tough so go for a loop pile. Colour wise steer clear of whites and light rugs as they will show every bit of dirt and spills, for this reason, try and pick nylon or synthetic over wool rugs, easier to clean and look just as good.
Above anything else is to not leave your child unsupervised in the bathroom, not even for a second.
For a bathroom, you’ll need to implement similar safety measures to the kitchen. Ensure that any harmful products are moved to a higher level, and any electrical appliances should be hidden away to avoid any electrical accidents. A lock should also be used on both the bathroom and toilet so they can’t go in there unescorted.
Is your baby’s cot new? If so, the chances are it’s up to date with all the safety regulations. However, if your cot is over five years old, double check with all current safety advice, before using it.
Another good tip is to have a thick rug to cushion any falls around the cot, some safe toy boxes preferably ones without lids, so nothing can catch fingers or fall on the baby’s head. Finger-pinch guards are good for all around the house for all hinges on doors.