Thursday, September 1, 2011

Baby Proofing

It is always so exciting to watch your baby develop, learn, and go through new stages. One major milestone that you may be looking forward to in your baby's life is crawling. BUT, crawling in itself can create an array of potential DANGERS for your baby if you are not careful about proofing the house.
Baby proofing a house is not an easy task, especially when we don't usually experience life from the ground up.

Here are some potential dangers that you may want to consider when going through the house:

-electrical outlets
-hanging cords from any type of object (example: television, computer, window blinds...etc.)
-stairs, stairs, stairs!
-location of household cleaning supplies
-heavy vases, plants, or decorative items that could fall on your baby
-any pesticides or mouse traps used in the house

Electrical Outlets:
For baby proofing your electrical outlets, you can purchase covers that are specially inserted into the socket. While these are easy to remove by an adult, they are almost impossible for a baby to remove. You can usually find these outlet covers at any type of hardware or home store.

Hanging Cords:
Cords can be one of the most dangerous things for babies and small children to get a hold of! To ensure that these are out of your little one's reach, use a string, a rubber band, or a bread tie to hang them up high and out of their sight.

Stairs, stairs, stairs!
After your baby has mastered their skill of crawling they will probably be on to figuring out other ways to develop their gross motor skills. To a baby, climbing up or down a staircase seems like an exciting new adventure, but just the thought of it can give a parent a heart attack! Think about installing a baby gate or other device to keep your baby away from these potential dangers and then when you have the time, safely let your baby practice climbing up and down each stair with you right behind them--that way if they loose their balance, you will be able to catch them.

Heavy vases, plants, or decorative items
Before the days of babies and children, you probably decorated your home with fancy things to display your tastes in design. Now that your home is filled with pacifiers, diapers, and toys you may want to retire the fancy decorations (don't worry it's only for a little while). Make sure the items that you don't end up retiring are placed in places where a baby can't hurt themselves. Any plants in the house should have sturdy pots so that they can't fall or tip over on your baby. 

Household cleaning supplies
While these items are extremely toxic to ingest, they can be irresistible to babies and children because of the bright colors and labels. The best way to avoid problems is to keep all of your cleaning supplies in one area, either in a locked cupboard, on a high shelf, or in a room where your child cannot enter.

Like cleaning supplies, pesticides can be very dangerous to ingest or touch. If possible, try not to use them at all but if you must, use your best discretion in using them in places where your baby is not likely to go.

This is only a short list of some of the things you should take caution with. To investigate other areas of the house, try getting on your hands and knees and actually get a baby's eye view of what trouble they could get in to.

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