Child Proof Your Home for the Holidays
Keeping children safe from danger is a parent’s priority and a full-time job. Unfortunately, accidents in the household do happen, such as a fall, burn, or choking. However, many childhood injuries are easily preventable if parents properly child-proof their homes. Start by observing each room on a child’s level to look for potential hazards. Here are some ways to make your home safe for young children who may be living in the home or visiting over the holidays.
Remove electrical hazards—Holiday lights and decorations can attract curious young minds. Make sure all lighting, appliances and cords are out of a child’s reach, especially away from sleeping, bathing, and changing areas. Cover all electrical outlets with child-safe covers.
Minimize risks of falling—Use baby gates and place them at the top and bottom of the staircase or to prevent access to areas or decorations that pose a risk. Remove large objects like stuffed animals and pillows from the crib so a toddler can’t climb out.
Secure large furniture— Flat panel TVs and other wall units should be securely fastened with brackets, braces, and wall straps for stability.
Avoid poisoning accidents—Keep medications and toxic cleaning supplies locked up in cabinets and drawers. Post the Poison Hotline number in a visible location.
Keep small items, firearms, and sharp objects out of reach items, such as batteries, buttons, coins, knives, and scissors, should be stored to avoid choking and injury. Guns should always be locked away.
Supervise children near water, heat, and flame—Never leave children unattended in the bathtub or swimming pool. Prevent scald burns by setting your water heater to 120 degrees. Watch them around the kitchen stove, fireplaces, fire pits, and barbeque grills: store matches, candles, and lighters in a hidden location.
Buy safety devices—Corner and edge bumpers prevent injury from falls against sharp edges. Knob covers discourage young children from turning them to enter rooms you wish to keep them out of. Cordless coverings and guards for windows are recommended to prevent strangulation and tragic falls.
Besides these methods, it’s always important to practice daily common-sense safety measures. Watch your children at all times. Keep emergency phone numbers updated and handy. Check your smoke detectors and monoxide alarms regularly to ensure they function properly, and change batteries once or twice per year. Choose a 4-foot-tall fence with self-closing, self-latching gates for outdoor play areas. In case of injury, poisoning, and other accidents, learn childhood first aid and CPR so that you are equipped to treat your child before the EMT arrives.
We can never be overly cautious regarding being aware of the danger zones in the household that can lead to childhood injuries. Take the necessary precautions to child-proof your home for to protect your children or visiting guests to enjoy a happy and safe holiday.
For more information about childproofing visit https://www.cpsc.gov/safety-education/safety-guides/kids-and-babies/childproofing-your-home-12-safety-devices-protect