Try to avoid these common childproofing mistakes if you want your growing child to be safe in and around the home. Yes, you can get safe baby gates but there are still plenty of childproofing mistakes you can make.
All new parents know that the difference between an infant and a newborn is huge. Your child may still look like a baby, but their new mobility has made them into a walking danger machine fully intent on causing trouble.
This means that it’s time to childproof your home. No longer is it safe to have unlocked cabinets and outlets without plugs. You’re on toddler time now, and for the foreseeable future, you’ll be trying to get ahead of any potential hazard.
There are a few childproofing mistakes that plenty of new parents have made in the past, and we’re here to help you avoid them so that your precious bundle remains safe and happy.
Keep reading to learn more about childproofing mishaps and how to avoid them.
1. Being Unaware of Pot Handles
Before the baby was born or you had an infant who was barely able to roll over, let alone make their way to the kitchen, it was easy to play a little bit fast and loose with your cooking.
Maybe you leave the stove on “low” accidentally. Perhaps you leave the handles of the pots and hands facing outwards even though you know that you shouldn’t. After all, you’re only hurting yourself, right? And you’ve been cooking for a while, so you know how to avoid a rogue handle.
Well, now that your child is mobile, you need to make sure that those handles are safely out of their reach. Even if they can’t fully reach the stove, they might be able to loop their pesky little fingers around the handles (especially if they have rings for hanging), and suddenly, you have a mess, or worse, a burned baby.
Turn all handles inwards to avoid the problem.
2. Forgetting the Toilet Seat
You might know that the toilet isn’t something to be played with, but your toddler has no such idea. They just know that it’s something that they don’t know how to use and that it looks suspiciously like the bath (where you likely play with water toys).
When you install locks on your toilet seats, you’re making the space safer for the toddler and avoiding a huge mess later. While it’s unlikely that the baby will fall into the toilet and get hurt (or worse drown), it’s also not impossible.
Keep the lock on there until the child is potty training. At that point, they need to know that the toilet is accessible and safe.
3. Leaving Pet Food Accessible
This one can be tough, especially if you have a dog.
Your pets may be used to grazing or returning to their food whenever they’re feeling hungry. When you have a baby on the move, you need to keep that food either up on the counter or behind a barrier.
Pet food isn’t likely to make your baby sick, but it can very easily be a choking hazard. It’s often harder than the easily-dissolvable baby cereals, but it looks similar, so your child may go in for a bite.
While cats will likely still reach their food with ease, your dog will have to learn to eat at mealtimes.
4. Forgetting Electrical Hazards
Are you the kind of person that has cords everywhere? Do you need one of those power strips just to plug in all of your electronics?
You might be accidentally putting your baby at risk.
Between cords and outlets, there are plenty of dangers in the average modern home. Cords can easily catch around a baby’s wrist, leg, or neck. A baby might also tug on a cable just to see what happens, resulting in a lamp, speaker, or something heavy dropping on the baby.
Outlets also need to be plugged with devices or plug protectors to keep your baby safe from a little jolt.
5. Not Stabilizing Furniture
Do you have any bookcases, shelves, heavy floor lamps, or other tall wall-bound pieces of furniture?
These things may seem sturdy, but to tiny toddler hands they are a challenge, and that challenge can end in disaster.
You can secure your furniture with simple tools that can keep it tight against the wall, stopping it from falling over onto the toddler.
6. Leaving Hot Drinks on Tables
Your morning coffee isn’t as safe as it once was.
If there’s a cup within arm’s reach of your child, it’s not unlikely that their grabby little hands will find it.
The toddler can get burned at worst; best case scenario they’ve made a sticky mess of themselves and the floor.
Some children will even try to drink coffee or tea that’s been left unattended, and the last thing that you need is a caffeinated toddler.
7. Leaving Bags on the Floor
Are you the type to throw your purse or backpack on the floor when you get home? Maybe it’s right by the shoe rack, or perhaps you like to do work on the floor, so you leave it at arms reach.
Be careful of this. Toddlers can (and will) get into things that they’re not supposed to get into. If your bag contains medication, candies, sharp objects, or anything else that could potentially cause harm to your child, it’s best to keep it high up.
Even if you’re in the same room, it only takes a moment for a toddler to cause trouble. Attended or not, leave your bags hanging or stowed away.
These Childproofing Mistakes Are No Joke
Every parent makes some childproofing mistakes, but these are the ones that we see most often.
Help your curious child avoid danger by making your home safe and soft. Locking away dangerous objects might seem like a pain, but it’s only temporary. Soon enough, your child will be able to avoid these things on their own.
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