Thursday, August 1, 2013

Child Proofing Your Home

Child proofing your home
How to Keep Your Baby Safe
 As my oldest child was just starting to crawl, I quickly realized that I didn’t childproof my home so much for my daughter’s safety as for my own sanity. If you are trying to homeschool an older child and watch a toddler, then baby proofing will save you a lot of worry and time. In addition to the fact that you don't want anything to happen to your precious bundle of joy, you need to be able to relax and enjoy their company and spend time with your older children. Proper childproofing will also provide your child with the freedom to roam that they will need to grow and learn properly.

Before You Buy

First things first, before you go to the store and buy every childproofing supply they sell, you need to get down on your hands and knees and crawl around your space. This will give you a look at what your child is looking at. You will see cords and bright colored sharp dangerous objects that you had no clue you needed to secure.   

Once you have accomplished this task you will need to survey your space for escape routes your little one may surprise you with. Where are the bathrooms, kitchen, outside doors and any water sources like a pool or hot tub?  You will need to build layers of protection around these areas as well as securing your electrical outlets and any large pieces of furniture.  Now you are ready to make your list and go shopping for the items below. 

Also, if you are using secondhand products or you have an older child you need to periodically check for product recalls.  You can do this quickly and easily at www.recalls.gov.

Electrical Outlet Covers

Count every outlet in your house and buy a cover for each. My daughter never messed with the outlet covers but my son did, so I recommend the locking covers at least in the nursery or playroom. Babies have little fingers that are usually wet and they are very attracted to outlets. They just love to stick their tinny fingers in those things and it could be deadly. 

The Baby Gate

Perhaps you will need one, or perhaps you will need four, it all depends on the size and set up of your house. You will want a baby gate to secure any stairs where the little one could fall, hallways and bathrooms. I have also found that when possible it is much easier to secure the kitchen with a baby gate then to secure each and every cabinet and appliance. There are some great creative homemade baby gate ideas on Pinterest, so before you spend the money check them out. 

Door Handle Locks

I have also found that it is much easier to secure the bathrooms with a special childproof door handle than any of the other contraptions they make for the bathroom.  I also put these on any doors that lead to the outside of the house.  I don't want my three year old on the news because she was found outside in the middle of the night. If you can find the crocheted door handle covers or make them on your own, I recommend these. The store bought models can be busted by any determined 18 month old.

Window Blinds

There have been numerous children, some of them as old as six, who accidentally hung themselves on window blinds. I actually found my older son trying to use one as a catapult one day, you never know what they might come up with. If you can, try to avoid window blinds with any strings or chains.  If you cannot avoid these types of blinds, there are security kits that you can purchase for them and in the worst case scenario you can cut the strings or hang them up high out of reach. 

Ah, the Armoire

Finally, if you have a lot of electronics, I have found that armoires are terrific. As all large furniture does, they need to be secured to the wall with eyehooks. Eyehooks are also great for interior doors.  We have found that securing these doors with eyehooks avoids unnecessary finger pinching.  Remember that if it can kill or break, secure it somehow and your home will be safe and secure.

You may also want to read Teaching Children About Safety.
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While it is true that I am working on a PHD in Psychology and very smart and frugal, I am not a medical doctor, criminal, personal or accident lawyer. I do not sell insurance nor am I an accountant or mortgage advisor. While some of my posts may offer good ideas on home and business solutions, I am not personally responsible nor is Homeschool Arizona for any advice, ideas, recipes or menu plans that you decide to use. This blog is intended to be helpful and fun. Any products you purchase from my Amazon store or any other retailer advertised on my blog must be returned to them. Any sponsors or advertisers are independent of this blog.