How to Babyproof Your Home

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Real Estate

How to Babyproof Your Home

About 4.5 million children under the age of 14 are injured in their own homes annually, and 2,700 die. Read on to find out how to baby/childproof your home.

Electrical outlets: Use inexpensive plastic safety plugs available almost everywhere to insert when outlets are not in use.

Electrical cords: Repair frayed or cracked cords with electrical tape. If possible, run cords behind heavy furniture or even tack them high up on a wall.

Telephone and window blind cords: Use wind-up cord shorteners for the phone cords and bind the blind cords up high out of baby’s reach.

Doors: Invest in some good, sturdy doorway gates available at baby and department stores.

Drawers, cupboards, closets and cabinets: Install latches on all within reach.

Freestanding furniture: All furniture of this type should either be bolted to the wall or floor or removed until your child is old enough to know better.

Furniture corners and edges: There actually are foam padded furniture edge covers you can buy at baby stores. Often you can get by with a thick blanket over sharp-cornered furniture.

Knick-knacks: These should be stored away for awhile, or at least displayed on shelves high above little ones’ heads. This includes small, toddler-mouth-sized items like coins, paper clips, matches, keys, batteries.

Kitchen: Knob covers for the stove and barriers that keep hands off the hot surface are available at baby and department stores. Oven latches keep kids from opening a hot oven door. Install a refrigerator latch. Plastic grocery sacks and plastic produce wrap should be disposed of immediately to prevent asphyxiation. Use a kitchen trashcan that fits under the sink or has a tight-fitting lid. When placing a tot in his high chair, always use the restraining straps. Keep a list of important phone numbers tacked to the refrigerator – poison control center, fire department, police, doctor’s office, dentist.

Bathroom: Use a plastic toilet lock. Make sure that all medicines (over-the-counter as well as prescription) are stored high above the floor in a latched cabinet. All cleaners should likewise be stored up high and in a locked closet or cabinet. Use a baby water thermometers to make sure bathwater doesn’t scald baby. Never leave a baby or toddler in a bathtub unattended. Use nonskid mats or appliques to prevent slipping. Use tub faucet covers to prevent little ones from accidentally turning the water on.