Before becoming a parent, I read just about every parenting book I could my hot little hands on. I polled all of my friends that were already parents and peppered them with a million questions. One topic came up quite a bit. Safety. Well, to be honest, safety was a close second after baby bodily functions, but that is neither here nor there.
Safety is a truly important issue when it comes to parenting and bringing that sweet little love home from the hospital. I recall being pregnant and looking around my house, seeing all of the potential dangers for my bundle of joy. However, I had no idea what was actually a danger until my baby grew into an inquisitive toddler!
Will Sanford, architect, blogger, and father, is here today with some tips for all of us on how to childproof your home like a pro! His tips will help you avoid all of those hidden dangers. Even the ones your precocious toddler tries to sniff out!
How to Childproof Your Home Like a Pro in 2018
Guest Post By Will Sanford
With all technology lying around the house, most modern homes these days aren’t even safe enough for grownups, let alone crawling children! Just think about it – when was the last time you crawled around on your hands and knees the entire day, exploring the space and playing around? Exactly. It does sound weird but crawling children sneak around virtually all day hoping to get acquainted with the place they live in, learn new things and get accustomed to their home. So, to understand our kids’ needs, we pretty much need to try and see things from their perspective.
Get Down on Your Knees
Yes, literally. Before going on with other babyproofing methods, make sure your place is spotless and that there are no any pins, needles, broken zippers, and other sharp objects the baby could accidentally run into, swallow or hurt themselves. Cover unused electrical outlets with safety caps or outlet protectors, and make sure they are updated with ground fault circuit interrupters if they are close to a water source. Vacuum and clean regularly and use cleaning products that are not harmful for your or your kid’s health.
Mind the Bathroom
Even though neither you nor the baby will be spending hours in the bathroom, it’s still one of the most unsanitary places in the house and you need to take good care of it. To keep children away from potentially harmful household products, beauty products, and medicines, install safety latches on cabinets and drawers along with toilet locks to keep toilet lids closed. Set the water heater thermostat to 120 degrees and have anti-scalding devices on shower heads and faucets properly installed to prevent burns. Make sure all electric rollers and hair dryers are unplugged after use (if possible, keep them in a cabinet out of your children’s reach).
Be Careful Around the Kitchen
The kitchen can be a very dangerous place for children with all the burners, gadgets and chemicals around, which is why it needs to be properly childproofed. Store all potentially toxic cleaning supplies in the top cabinets rather than the bottom ones or under the sink. If the products have to stay in the bottom cabinets, use a childproof lock on the cabinet door. Make sure any heating device, such as a stove, oven door, or microwave is turned off. Don’t ever leave insect or mouse traps in places where the baby can find them and, God forbid, try to play with them.
Think About the Garden, Too
Eventually, your toddler will want to go out or just sneak out when you are not looking. Childproofing your yard/garden is also a must, and there are a few ways you can make it a kid-friendly space. First, provide soft landings for the baby to sit and play on and avoid pea gravel at all cost. Remove dangerous plants (toxic plants, plants that bear small fruit, prickly plants) and make sure there are no prickly bush/trees around. Consult tree removal experts to help out with greenery you can’t manage on your own. Finally, use plants to soften sharp edges.
Keep Your Focus Sharp
Roaming around the house, children will find everything interesting enough to touch, put in their mouth or play with. To keep them from entering the rooms with a lot of sharp objects or hurting themselves down the stairs, use safety gates that keep the staircase safe and hazardous rooms out of the kids’ reach. Corner and edge bumpers on furniture are great solutions, especially if your home is modern and has a lot of sharp edges. Make sure your furniture isn’t close to high windows (yes, children will be tempted to climb onto window sills) and window blinds don’t have looped cords. Fix any furniture piece that need fixing and secure shelves, bookcases and heavy furniture to walls with brackets and anchors.
Hopefully, the advice above helped. Do have in mind the best way to childproof your home begins with thoughtful planning and strategizing. Good luck, and keep your baby safe!
Will Sandford is a Sydney based wood architect, blogger and contributor on interior design and ecology blogs. Besides that, he is also interested in home improvement combined with green technology. Proud father of lovely girl and little boy. In his spare time, Will enjoys surfing and rock climbing.
What is your best tip or parenting hack to childproof your home like a pro? Please comment and share below!