Family • Wellbeing • Adventure

Tuesday 26 January 2021

Childproofing 101: 11 Safety Devices you can Use to Protect Your Child

Every year, children lose their lives or experience injuries due to hazards that occur at home. It can prove difficult to childproof your home when you overlook possible danger. Fortunately, there are many available devices in the market that you can use to prevent these hazards. However, you must ensure that they are firm enough for your child by following the installation guidelines.

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Some of the childproofing devices that you should add to your checklist include:

Safety gate

It is easier to manage your child’s behavior and go about your activities when you confine them to one room. A safety gate will prevent them from falling down the stairs, and it keeps them away from any danger zones such as the kitchen, basement, or garage when you’re busy. The best way to make it work is by installing one that your child cannot dislodge, but you or any other adult can close or open with ease.

When making a purchase, ensure it has a certification seal that guarantees it meets safety standards. For an older gate, make sure the "V" shape is not large enough to fit your child's neck and head.

Child locator

Children at a particular age tend to be very curious not only around the home but also when you are out in the market or park. To ensure that you know their whereabouts at all times, get a child locator. It comes in a pair that you fit on your child's wrists or ankles. As a parent, you will have a keychain transmitter that has a button.

If your child wanders off as you get shopping done, or catching up with a friend, press the button so that the locator emits a loud sound. This way, you can find him/her fast before they go too far.

Safety locks and latches

These will not always guarantee your child's safety. However, they make it difficult for them to reach items or substances that can cause harm. Install these on cabinets or doors that hold hazardous substances like bleach, detergents, medicine, chemicals, or glass. While purchasing a looping latch will be affordable, it will be ineffective and expose your child to potential harm. Ensure you install safety products that can withstand tugs and pulls from children but are easy for you to operate.

Safety netting and window guards

Children climb on several surfaces such as windows; it is easy for them to fall off the decks, landings, windows, and balconies. To prevent dangerous falls that result in death, minor, or permanent injuries, install safety nets and window guards. Ensure that there are proper installation and maintenance to make them secure. Window guards should maintain a four-inch space between bars.

To prepare well in case of a fire, leave a window free of window guards for easy escape. However, keep it shut to prevent your child from falling off or create a soft landing beneath it.

Smoke alarms/detectors

Every home is susceptible to fires; we use it daily to prepare meals, lighting, or warmth. Possible gas leaks can also lead to fires that result in death or injury. To protect your child and yourself, install smoke detectors in all home levels to alert you in case of a fire. Always check them monthly to ensure they still work, change batteries annually, or get ten-year batteries.

Secure your pool, tub, and spa

Children will drown in a tub or pool in your absence. To ensure their safety, childproof these areas by surrounding them with tall fences and install self-latching or self-closing gates. Door locks are also crucial; install them high enough where young children can’t reach them. For your pool, use a protective cover over the water and install pool alarms. Ensure you re-secure locks of sliding doors after every use.

For the days when you use these utilities with your children, ensure you disinfect the water and surfaces with chlorine tablets to prevent skin infections.

Anchors for furniture

Children will pull themselves, climb onto, or fall against furniture like shelves, dressers, ranges, television stands, desks, and bookcases. Most of these, when they tip over, will crush the child causing death or severe injuries. To protect your child, attach your furniture to walls or anchor them on the floor. Use anti-tip brackets during stove and free-standing range installations.

Cut window cords

Despite all the safety advances during the recent year, children continue to be entrapped in hazardous blind cords. Blind cords on windows can result in strangulation when children pull and wrap them around their necks; cut the cord loop. To childproof them, use safety tassels for mini blinds, and on vertical blinds, use tension devices or drapery cords. However, the best option is to use cordless window coverings, as recommended by Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) where there are children in the home.

Door holders and door stops

Doors are heavy and will easily crush or pinch your child’s hands and fingers when they shut fast. To prevent such injuries, childproof them with door holders or door stops. Some safety devices are easy to use but may pose a choking hazard for children. Ensure that they are firm and unlikely to break into small pieces.

Bed rails

Once your child starts sleeping in their bed instead of a crib, you will want to protect them from falling off. Avoid using a wall for protection because they can get stuck in between. Instead, use bed rails for any kind of bed on both sides. You can find those that are adjustable to fit queen, full, and twin size beds or get the inflatable rails.

Edge and corner bumpers

Sharp fireplace and furniture edges can result in falls and injuries for young children. Use edge and corner bumpers to prevent these or soften the fall against rough and sharp edges. Ensure that you purchase quality bumpers that will stay secure on the fireplace and furniture edges.
Bottom Line

Acquire quality childproofing devices to keep your home safe and secure from potential hazards that may cause harm to your child. Some of the items to check off your list are door holders and door stops, safety gates, smoke detectors, child locators, furniture anchors, window guards and safety netting, and safety latches. Remember to secure your pool, spa, and tubs, cut window cords, and install bed rails. Ensure you buy quality products and follow the proper installation guidelines for maximum protection.

K Elizabeth xoxox

*Collaborative Post


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