HOW TO PREPARE YOUR HOME FOR TODDLERS
Accidents can happen so quickly – especially when you have a toddler in the house. Though it is beyond anyone’s control to prevent all mishaps, there are certain steps homeowners can take to lower the risks of accidents in their household:
Remove: dials on the gas stove when not in use (if possible), switch off electric stoves by the wall when not in use, and store detergents and knives in top cupboards instead of at toddler-reaching levels.
Add: child locks on all cupboards, purchase a lidded trash can as opposed to an open one, and add latches to your fridge and oven doors.
Remove: razors, nail clippers, shampoos, mouth washes and all other products from accessible places and store them in a locked cupboard or in a mirrored vanity cupboard above the basin instead.
Add: a toilet lock on the toilet lid, a non-slip mat in the bathtub to prevent falls, and set your geyser to a lower temperature (around 50 °C ) to prevent your toddler from severely scolding themselves if they accidentally open the hot water tap.
Remove: easily breakable items (especially glass items that can shatter when dropped) and store all electronics on top shelves rather than near to the floor.
Add: plastic wiring covers, a toddler gate around the fireplace to prevent your toddler from going near it, plush rugs and soft-edged furniture to protect your toddler from hard bumps when they stumble.
Remove: gardening tools and pesticides from accessible areas and store them in the garage or in a locked shed, pull out any thorn bushes or poisonous plants, and remember to wind the hosepipe rather than leaving it unwound as a tripping hazard in the backyard.
Add: a cover for swimming pools and consider installing a fenced off play area in which all potential hazards have been removed.
As many baby-proofing products and tips as there are, homeowners need to consider that not all homes have been designed with young children in mind. There are certain homes that pose greater risks to young children (double story homes with open balconies, for example). To avoid the route of renovations that will result in a construction zones, which are equally as hazardous for your child, homeowners might need to consider relocating to a safer home for their new family.