Top 10 ways to baby proof your home

Baby proofing your home is essential to keeping children safe. Susan Helms, Le Bonheur’s Director of Injury Prevention and Safe Kids Mid-South, shares a few simple tips on how to prevent injuries.

Curious Kids Don’t Always Understand DangerBaby on stool

Keeping children safe is always a top priority for parents. Unfortunately, accidents happen around the house and children may fall out of their crib or run into a sharp corner and injure themselves. But many childhood injuries are easily preventable if parents properly baby-proof their home.

“The best way to find potential dangers is to explore your home at a child’s level by getting down on your hands and knees,” Helms says. “Cover every room and ask yourself what looks tempting and what is within reach (between the floor and about 40 inches above). Also, check carpets for buried dangers like pins or coins.”

Although childproofing a home can never be 100 percent effective, Helms stresses that parents should always supervise their children, especially around water, in the kitchen or bathroom and wherever known hazards exist.

Here are 10 ways to baby-proof your home:

  1. Move appliances, breakables and cords out of reach. Be sure to keep these items away from cribs and bathing and diaper changing areas.
  2. Change your baby's diaper on a low surface so he or she cannot roll off. Changing your child on the floor is a good alternative.
  3. Take any large stuffed animals, bumpers and pillows out of your child’s crib so your child can’t climb out.
  4. Place corner guards on sharp edges, such as table corners or fireplaces.
  5. Place a baby gate at the top and bottom of the staircase.
  6. Cover all electrical outlets.
  7. Prevent scald burns by setting your water heater to 120 degrees.
  8. Plan and practice a fire escape plan.
  9. Lock up all cupboards that contain medications and toxic products. Post the Poison Hotline number 1-800-222-1222 in a high-visibility area.
  10. Mount flat-panel TVs to the wall and place large, box-style TVs on a low, stable piece of furniture. Use brackets, braces or wall straps to secure unstable or top-heavy furniture to the wall.
child safety