Safety is the first job of any parent. To raise happy children, they have to be safe and healthy. It’s why we buy alarms, lock the doors and windows, and teach our kids about stranger danger. Safety, first and foremost, begins in the home. A surprising amount of these injuries occur in one of the smallest, and most overlooked rooms in your home: the bathroom. From the youngest member of your home to the oldest, bathroom and bath time safety is a must.
Infants and small children have their own set of bath time related dangers. Any level of standing water is a hazard, as children can drown in as little as two inches of water. For children under 6, it’s important to keep your eyes on them at all times. They can slip down and become submerged with relatively little noise or splashing. For bathing infants, pick out a baby tub with a contoured edge or sling to prevent slips. Keep everything you need within arm’s reach — and accessible, ideally, with one hand so that the other can stay on the infant at all times. Use a product like SoftSpotz Bathtime Kneelers from Ah Goo Baby to cushion your knees and prevent slippage when you are leaning over the tub to wash their hair.
Make sure to keep anything you wouldn’t want in your child’s hands or mouth locked away. Medicine, cleaning agents, and sharp objects (like razors) are all potentially deadly in the hands of a curious child. Lock down toilet seats, cover electrical outlets. You can also use a spout cover on the tub’s faucet to make it friendlier for accidental collisions with your child’s head.
Protection from falls is paramount in seniors who have mobility issues. Grab bars are an excellent way to help them get in and out of the tub, or up from the toilet. For extra assistance, raising the toilet up as little as three inches can help seniors get up and down. Walk-in bathtubs are also a great option for ease of mobility. Unlike baby bath products, which are easy to find and buy, installing safety fixtures for seniors sometimes require remodeling your bathroom. Some see remodeling as expensive and time consuming, but with the help of a little patience and renovation financing, the benefits of protecting your loved ones from injury can easily outweigh the costs.
All Family Members
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 81 percent of bathroom accidents are falls, and most of those occur in the shower, while bathing. Bathtubs are slippery by nature, and that’s what makes them treacherous. Anti-slip bathtub treads on the bottom of the tub like these adhesive anti-slip circles from Puj help family members keep their traction. They can even be as discreet or as colorful as your decor allows.
Rugs on the bathroom floors can reduce slips coming out of the tub. Rugs that offer a lot of squish can also be great for the knees of caregivers who often have to kneel at the tub to help with bath time (not to mention they feel luxurious to step on when getting out of the shower). My favorite bathmat is the
Family members with sensitive skin, like babies and small children, can be especially susceptible to burns from too-hot water. You can adjust the temperature settings on your hot water heater to ensure that no one can be accidentally burned or blistered. The best water temperatures for small children range between 37 and 38 degrees Celsius.
The most helpful safety tool in your kit is a plan in case something does happen. Plan for the worst, and you’ll find that it’s not as bad as it could be. Keep a first aid kit on hand. Make sure someone (or multiple people) in your home are trained in CPR. Teach your kids what to do in case of a medical emergency. If you have a family member with ongoing health issues, make sure their information is up-to-date with their doctors or other medical caregivers. If a doctor or hospital visit is required, patient data can help medical personnel tell the difference between a simple fall or a cardiac event leading to a fall.