Childproofing Your New Home
Childproofing Your New Home After Moving to Nashville
Household injuries are one of the top reasons kids under 3 visit the E.R. each year. Childproofing your new home is a crucial step in the moving process, but most parents either forget or disregard its importance. Even if you feel pretty confident that you’ve done a thorough job of childproofing, chances are you’ve missed something. It’s smart to be prepared for the worst, especially when it’s your child’s safety at hand, so we’ve compiled a guide pointing out many of the potential hazards room-by-room for your children, as well as advice on how to easily childproof them.
Keep candles and matches well out of reach, and try flameless LED candles to mimic the effect of flickering candlelight. Because your child can knock over or drop a photo frame and cut him or herself with the shattered glass, put photo frames in unreachable spots, mount them on a wall, or replace them with plastic. Mount your television securely on the wall to prevent it from falling on your child. Make sure your fireplace is covered when it’s not in use, and consider installing heat-resistant gates to use when the flames are burning. Exposed electronics can lead to accidental electrocution, so ensure that power strips are hidden behind furniture and battery covers are latched securely into remote controls and other electronics. Be especially careful with button batteries, which are higher voltage than regular batteries and can be easily swallowed. Lastly, unprotected glass coffee tables are a huge hazard, so make sure it has a tempered-glass top or purchase edge guards.
Firstly, make sure your crib is set up safely. We recommend fixed-side cribs over drop-side cribs. Windows should only be able to open 3 inches (about the height of an adult fist) or they should have a window guard to prevent your child from falling out. Window blinds should also be cordless since more than 200 young children have died since 1990 from getting their necks caught in a looped cord and being strangled. Keep crayons stowed away when not in use, because they can be broken in two and choked on. Anchor all heavy furniture, like dressers, to the wall or floor to avoid tip-over related injuries. Porcelain piggy banks are especially dangerous, as a toddler could shatter it and get cut on the pieces or choke on the coins inside. Either keep them high up out of reach or install drawer stops that keep drawers from being open more than two-thirds of the way.
A big step to reducing injuries to keep the kitchen gated. Because this room is full of risks, it’s best to keep this area off-limits when you’re not around. Cleaning products are very toxic, so either secure lower cabinets with a magnetic lock or use a traditional latch with a childproof locked box. The biggest hazard is ingesting detergent, so make a point of running the dishwasher as soon as you add the detergent, as well as keeping it locked whenever possible. Store knives with blades down and leave dishes in the machine for as short a time as possible. Mount your microwave high up and never turn it on and walk away. Get a stove guard — a plastic or metal shield that attaches to the front — which makes it harder for curious hands to reach burners. Be sure to cook on the back burners whenever possible, and never let the pan handles face forward. Ovens are easy to pull open, so always put it in lock setting or install an oven latch. The same goes for refrigerators. Lastly, always store cutlery in an above-the-counter cabinet, especially if you have a child with special needs.
Tub faucets can be tricky – we recommend rubber spout covers to protect your toddler from bangs and bruises as well as installing an anti-scald device to prevent burns. Although using plastic shopping bags as trash can liners makes it easier for you to empty the trash, this convenience isn’t worth the risk of your child putting the bag over his or her head and suffocating. The most common types of amputations in kids involve fingers and thumbs, so make sure that your doors can’t shut all the way using stopper devices or simply draping a towel over the top. A little water on the floor could send your child flying, so always mop up all the water on the floor after showers or baths. Keep the toilet seat lid down, install a latch, and remind visitors to use it since toddlers could fall in and not be able to get back out. Leave electronic devices like hair dryers unplugged and stowed away when not in use. It is crucial to lock pills and toiletries away using a magnetic latch or a childproof medicine container since the ingredients in adult products may be more toxic for a small child.
We hope these tips are helpful in childproofing your new home after you move to Nashville. If you haven’t moved yet but plan to, we’ve got you covered there too! Give us a call today for all your moving needs!