[tip:] To gain a baby’s perspective of your home, crawl around on all fours and see what catches your eye. Things like electrical cords, which you probably don’t notice on a daily basis, might be in prime pulling position for someone on carpet-level.
- Every outlet should have a child-resistant plug cover.
- Install door guards on doors to keep your child from pinching his fingers. Use cord covers or tape down electrical and phone cords, and use cord wraps for blind cords so that baby won’t get tangled in them. Also, install window guards to prevent baby from falling or crawling out.
- Be familiar with which plants you have in your home to ensure that none of them are toxic to your baby if eaten. Remove those that are.
- Use safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs and anywhere else needed to keep your baby in or out of certain areas of the house.
- Place safety latches or locks on cabinets and drawers, as well as on your refrigerator, oven and dishwasher.
- Move cleaning supplies to top cabinets, even if you have cabinet locks installed. Safer items like pots and pans can occupy lower cabinets.
- Unplug and stow away electrical appliances when not in use. If you have to keep something on the counter top, use cord shorteners to keep the cord out of reach.
- When cooking on the stove top, use the rear burners and turn pot and pan handles toward the back so that baby can’t grab them. Better yet, invest in a stove guard. Install stove knob covers so that baby can’t accidentally turn on the heat.
- Store choking or suffocation hazards, like kitchen magnets and plastic bags, out of baby’s reach.
- Set your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit or lower to prevent scalding.
- Unplug and put away any electrical appliances when not in use (curling irons, razors, etc.).
- Store hygiene products out of baby’s reach, including toothpaste, cosmetics, tweezers and other potential dangers.
- Install a toilet latch to keep baby from falling or throwing objects into it.
- Place skid-free mats in the bottom of tubs and showers to prevent slips and falls, and put a faucet cover on the bathtub spout to reduce injury if your child hits her head.
- Place edge protectors on furniture with sharp-edged corners, like coffee and end tables.
- Inspect the floor for small objects every time you enter the room.
- Remove rubber tips from doorstoppers (they are a choking hazard).
- Anchor bookcases and other tall furniture to the wall so they won’t fall if your child tries to climb on them.
- Clear all surfaces, including tabletops, which are at or below your chest.
- Don’t position the crib near a window.
- Avoid using trunks or toy boxes to keep your child from getting trapped in them, and store toys on shelves instead.
- Keep nightlights at least 3 feet away from the crib, bedding, curtains and anything else that could catch fire. Try finding a nightlight that doesn’t generate much heat.
- Put a soft rug under the changing table and crib for extra cushioning in case of a fall.