The Center for Disease Control reports a startling fact about child safety: unintentional injuries are the number one cause of casualties in children. While not all of these injuries occur inside the home, many of them do. But there’s no need to panic. When that squishy bumble of brand new baby begins embarking on new adventures like crawling, walking and general mobile curiosity, there are some simple steps you can take to baby proof your home. These tips also won’t even break the bank.
For starters, think small. You don’t have to go overboard and bubble wrap your whole house, even if you may be tempted to. There are fancy baby proofing experts available for hire to search your home for potential baby hazards, but a little common sense on a small budget can go a long way in keeping your child safe. So think minimalism – especially in regards to decorating. Move your favorite, breakable trinkets to a tall shelf. They’re easy to admire from afar, and unreachable for little curious hands. And in a few years, you can place those fragile pieces to a lower space and enjoy them for years to come.
Moving those trinkets, along with other objects, costs no money at all. Those shiny glass coffee tables are another great thing to store for a later stage of parenting. The sharp corners are a bullseye for a clumsy toddler’s head, not to mention…the sticky little fingerprints are never ending. So find a storage area, or unused room to keep them clean and safe for a few years. For all of your wooden furniture, and fireplaces edges, apply a simple cushy adhesive to mask the corners.
As for those critical essentials, they don’t have to break the bank either. Baby gates can be found at garage sales and baby consignment shops. Plus, they have more uses than just keeping stairways safe. Connectable baby gates can make great a safe haven while you’re cooking, or make a nice barrier around fireplaces. You can also keep that curious, roaming toddler safely in their room at night. Other affordable essentials include drawer and cupboard locks that are simple to install and remove when you’re done with them. Temperature guards on bathtubs give peace of mind, and if you’ve ever lost your car keys at the hands of a little one, you know toiled locks are crucial
Outlets are one of the most feared hazards because the injuries happen in the blink of an eye. But if you’re currently out house hunting, notice that most newer houses have outlet covers built right in. You can’t see them, and little fingers can’t remove them, but the design only opens when two prongs are entered at once. So say goodbye to the toddler with a butter knife fear. If your house isn’t equipped with this safety feature, a local hardware store and the help of an electrician can upgrade this hazard in no time.
Safety is the first concern when you start to considering babyproofing, but you still want to enjoy your house once the kids are grown. So cover beautiful wooden tables with decorative cloth or doilies, and use placemats to prevent scratches from those vigorous toys with wheels. You can also consider some trendy rugs to cover up the carpets from spills. In a few years when you’re out of the parenting trenches, you’ll thank yourself for keeping your children safe and your home beautiful.