Did you know that, accidents in the home are the primary cause of death in U.S. children? Around 9 million children are accidentally injured every year and more than 12,000 are killed, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
As parents, we take such care to buy the right car-seat, we obsess over dyes in our children’s food and are as watchful as eagles when our little ones are out in public. But studies have shown that some of the biggest dangers are the ones right inside our own homes. By taking a few simple precautions, these injuries can be avoided thus making your home safe for your child and the children who visit it.
Your kitchen is home to a wide variety of dangers including toxic chemicals and poisons. Installing safety latches on low-level cabinets and drawers is critical, but poisons are not the only concern. Installing safety latches on drawers help to keep little hands from grabbing sharp objects like scissors or knives from inside the drawers is a good idea as well.
Your stove is another danger zone. Practice using your back burners when cooking on the stove top and keeping the handles of your pots and pans turned in to help avoid burns when a curious child decides to investigate what mommy is cooking.
Installing safety latches on cabinets and drawers in your bathroom is another good idea as well since many bathrooms house unsafe household cleaning products and medicines.
Another dangerous combination is electrical appliances that get hot like curling irons and blow dryers. Not only can they burn little bodies, they can also pose an electrocution danger when combined with water.
Teach your children early that electricity and water do not mix and that no electrical appliances of any kind should ever be immersed in or placed under running water.
Toilet locks should also be used in homes that have small children to keep lids down. Young children are ‘top heavy’ and can easily fall into a toilet if they lean in to play in it. Since a young child can drown in less than just an inch of water, it is imperative to closely supervise them in the bathroom at all times.
Your House In General
Falling objects pose a huge safety threat for children as well. Take the time to walk around your house and secure heavy furniture that could easily tip, such as bookshelves, to the wall using brackets.
Use doorknob covers to keep your wee ones out of rooms with potential hazards and also to keep them from leaving the house unsupervised.
Make sure your window blinds do not have looped cords because that style can present a strangulation hazard to a young child. Blinds, shades, and draperies purchased before 2001 should be repaired or replaced and always lock blinds into position whether they are all the way up or down.
Lastly, always cover your electrical outlets with protective covers to keep small fingers from them and small objects from being inserted into them.
Check your house over carefully for other potential hazards and address them immediately. With these precautions and some common sense, your household will be your child’s haven. But the number one thing to remember; supervise your children at all times as childproofing your home can never be 100% effective against accidental injury.