Guide to Childproofing Your Home

– 740 – Guide to Childproofing Your Home

How to Childproof Your Entire House, Room by Room

Whether you’re expecting, are already a new parent or just want to keep your loved ones’ small children safe in your home, you’ll need to learn a few things about childproofing your house. Your home is likely full of hazards, many that you probably aren’t even aware of. Here’s a room-by-room guide with everything you need to know about childproofing your home so that everyone stays safe and happy.

Childproofing for the Entire Home

While safety concerns vary from room to room there are a few things you’ll want to purchase and use throughout your home:

  • Electrical outlet covers for every single outlet that small hands can reach.
  • Cabinet locks for all cabinets and drawers.
  • Furniture and heavy object tie downs. (This might not seem necessary at first, but think about how fun climbing a bookcase would seem to a toddler.)
  • Baby gates for doorways, stairs and other areas you want to block off.
  • Window guards, especially on higher levels of your house.
  • Knob covers for certain doors. These plastic spheres make it difficult for small hands to turn door knobs and are useful for keeping rooms off-limits.

Childproofing the Kitchen and Dining Room

Keeping your kitchen safe is incredibly important. There are so many hazards that a curious young child can find, so complete these tasks:

  • Install cabinet locks on all of your lower cabinetry to keep little hands away from chemicals, pots, pans and other kitchen items.
  • Store hazardous cleaners up and away. Even with cabinet locks it’s not worth the potential risk.
  • Don’t forget about your drawers — lock those up, too.
  • Install a cover over your garbage disposal, if you have one.
  • Add locks to the fridge, stove knobs and dishwasher.
  • Remove all small magnets from your fridge, because they can be a choking hazard.
  • Remove placemats and tablecloths from your dining room table, since children can easily pull them off.
  • If you have a china cabinet, lock it up.
  • Do an audit of where you store sharp utensils, such as knives. Make sure that they are safely secured.

What to Childproof in Bedrooms

Next, we’ll move on to your bedrooms. Add the following tasks to your to-do list:

  • Add locks or otherwise secure your dresser and nightstand drawers. These can sometimes topple over if all or several drawers are opened.
  • If you have alarm clock cords, phone chargers or any other cords that can be easily grabbed, store them out of reach.

How to Childproof the Bathroom

The bathroom is another area where children can easily get into trouble:

  • Adjust your hot water heater so that the water is no hotter than 120 degrees to prevent scalding.
  • Add a soft cover to the bathtub faucet to prevent bumps and bruises. These often come in fun shapes, so they can double as bath time entertainment.
  • Purchase no-slip mats for the bottom of your bathtub and/or shower.
  • Install cabinet and drawer locks where they’re needed- bathroom cleaning supplies are just as dangerous as kitchen cleaners. Medicines also need to be locked up.
  • Consider installing a toilet lock on your toilet. This can reduce exposure to germs, keep fingers safe from being crushed in the toilet seat, and will also keep curious kids from trying to get to the water.

Childproofing your Living Room

Moving on to the living room, these are the areas where you’ll want to focus your attention:

  • Fireplaces and their flickering flames can be intriguing to children, so purchase and use fireplace grates or guards.
  • Add padding to sharp corners, especially on coffee tables.
  • Tidy up wires and other cords, since children love to pull on them.
  • Store all remotes in a safe place.
  • If you have a flat-screen television, anchor it securely to the wall.

Even if you tackle each of these tasks and purchase every safety item listed, it never hurts to be extra diligent. One great way to see things from a child’s perspective is to get down on your hands and knees to crawl around — you might be surprised by what you see!

Do you have extra tips for making your home safer for children? Share them with us in the comments!

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