Baby proofing your home
Baby proofing your home

Kitchen:
 

  • If the layout of your kitchen allows it, erect a barrier across your kitchen’s doorway to prevent your child entering while you cook.
  • Ensure that all pot handles and cords don’t overhang the benches and stove avoiding the possibility of your child pulling something down on top of her.
  • Use a stove/hot plate guard.
  • Don’t use a table cloth with young children – one tug and the entire contents of the table can be on the floor and all over them.
  • Keep detergents and cleaning substances out of reach of your child.
  • Never store poisons in food containers.
  • Place child-proof locks on all cupboards and drawers that are in reach of your child.

Laundry:
 

  • If you use a nappy bucket, ensure that it is always closed securely as is stored out of reach of your child.
  • Store all detergents and bleaches in a locked cupboard that is out of reach of your child.
  • Make sure that all buckets are left empty.

Bathroom:
 

  • The bathroom is one of the most dangerous rooms in the house, so never let your child ‘play’ in there and always supervise her when she is in there.
  • Young children can drown in a small amount of water.
  • Always start running a bath by turning on the cold tap first and then adding the hot water to it – you child can easily be scalded by hot water.
  • Make sure that the running water in your bathroom does not exceed 50 degrees.
  • Keep all electrical appliances out of the bathroom to avoid possible electrocution.
  • Although baby ramps and seats are designed to keep your baby safe, always supervise as it is possible that she could slide out or tip over.
  • When you are bathing your young child, ensure that you have everything you need in the bathroom with you before you start.
  • Always store medications in a locked child-proof cupboard that is out of reach.

Lounge and dining room:
 

  • Put a safety guard around any heaters or open fireplaces you may have.
  • Cover all unused power points.
  • Make sure that all shelving is secured to a wall or is stable.
  • Ensure that any equipment – TV, DVD player, stereo – is stored in a safe and appropriate manner; all cords are tucked away, remote controls are stored out of reach, the cabinet is stable and not top-heavy.
  • Store your child’s toys in an accessible and safe place that she can get to without needing your help.

Stairs, balconies and verandahs:
 

  • You must have a railing on stairs, balconies or verandahs that are higher than 600mm.
  • The balustrade on stairs must be at least 865 mm high, unless the drop is greater than 3 metres and then it needs to be 1050mm high; on a verandah or balcony they should be at least 1000 mm high.
  • If you have a high balustrade, you should also have a lower continuous handrail that your child can use.
  • The gaps between the rails below the balustrade should be no more than 100 mm.
  • Place lockable gates at the top and bottom of staircases to avoid the possibility of you child falling on the stairs unsupervised.
  • Stairs should have a non-slip surface and you could consider putting impact-absorbing mats at the foot of the stairs

Windows


  • Window restrictors should be fitted to windows with a fall height of more than 2 metres
  • It is mandatory that a window restrictors are fitted to windows where the sill is less than 760mm above the floor

 

Common Sense Advice. Share your experiences, tips and advice on the Kidspot Social.

This article was written by Ella Walsh for Kidspot. Sources include SA Government’s Parenting and Child Health.



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