Baby proofing checklist for when your baby starts walking
When your baby transitions from crawling to walking, it is one of the most exciting milestones they reach. But, it can get pretty dangerous when you spot them trying to get into cupboards and pulling heavy objects off shelves. The good news is that there are a few things you could do to help reduce the chances of your baby getting hurt. Below is a baby proofing checklist for when your baby starts walking.
Secure heavy furniture
To start off, you need to make sure you secure any heavy furniture that you have. This includes objects like bookcases, chairs, and tables, as well as even child proofing doors and cupboards too. The last thing you want is for your new walker to grab onto one of these pieces of furniture and end up getting caught underneath it – or worse, the furniture falling onto your baby and squashing them!
Bigger items, like the bookcase, should be secured to a wall using a bracket or two. For the chairs and tables, you can place grips on the bottom, like gripping pads, that will prevent them from tipping and sliding. Place door stoppers on doors too, to ensure your baby doesn’t trap their fingers when they open and shut the doors.
Start going into each room and moving any breakables you spot out of touch – and sight! Your best would be to remove them completely otherwise, you could just move them to an area that’s high up, so they can’t be reached by your baby. Breakables include glass dishes, crockery, vases and pretty much anything else that can be easily broken. And, don’t forget to move your items of sentimental value. The last thing you want is your baby knocking an object onto the floor and it shattering, causing severe injury as a result.
Install baby gates by stairs
It is imperative to childproof stairs, so your baby doesn’t find their way at the top, to only then tumble back down. Baby gates are relatively affordable and very good at helping keep your baby safe. The best place to put them is at the top and bottoms of the stairs, but you could also place baby gates in doorways to areas like the bathroom or the office.
The main reason why you want baby gates on the stairs is that a fall can cause serious injuries. Plus, you’ll feel less nervous when your baby has wandered off somewhere, which will happen more often when they hit the toddler years and begin to navigate the stairs – and other rooms – themselves.
Gates are also great for restricting certain areas. Use baby gates to section off the kitchen when cooking to reduce the chances of the baby getting hurt from hazards, like falling knives or splattering hot oil. Bathrooms should be restricted areas too, as this is where you generally house harmful cleaning chemical products.
Move choking hazards
As a parent, you already know that babies are always putting anything and everything they find in their mouths. But, when the object is a bigger toy, then it isn’t so bad, but when they start walking, they’ll have access to other objects that could be smaller in size. If they put these objects into their mouth, there’s a chance that they can swallow it and start to choke. If this happens, you have a very short amount of time in which you can get the object out or call for help. To reduce the risk of this happening, move everything that could potentially be a choking hazard upwards and out of sight. Also, install a baby safety door on cupboards, so that the baby doesn’t accidentally find dangers inside. If you aren’t sure if the object is a hazard, err on the side of caution and move it anyway.
Lock up dangerous chemicals or objects
Hazardous chemicals and objects, like toilet cleaners, bleach and knives, are something you definitely don’t want your baby to get into their hands. Not only can these cause severe damage, but they can lead to death, which is, of course, the very last thing you want. So make sure you keep all of these dangerous objects away from them. There are a few ways you can do this. You can either place dangerous objects into a case or cupboard that has child safety door locks in place, or you can store them in rooms that your baby doesn’t have access to. Finally, install childproof cupboard locks on cabinets and drawers as well that contain hazardous objects for extra security.
Tie up cords
Tieing up window blind cords is something that people don’t always think of, but it can be a dire situation if your baby gets caught up in these dangly bits of durable string. Baby proofing cords on window blinds ensure that your baby won’t get tangled up in them and suffocate. If you can, try and find some blinds that don’t have any cords dangling down at all. And, make sure you install childproof window locks while you’re at it, so baby can’t get out either!
Look for other miscellaneous items to baby proof
Almost done! Take a look around the room and spot any other potential hazards which could be harmful to your baby. Consider buying a baby proofing kit, which contains items that can help you baby proof corners, the fireplace if you have one, the oven, and other dangerous anomalies that you find during your baby proofing journey.
The above baby proofing checklist isn’t difficult to do and taking the time to baby proof your home could mean the difference between life and death. The best thing to do is just place everything hazardous up, locked away and out of reach, and do everything you possibly can to baby proof the house. If you aren’t sure whether or not a particular item is dangerous, just baby proof it in any way, just in case. It’s better to be too safe than too sorry!
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