SheBrisbane caught up with Stacey Cooper, a creative individual and DIY enthusiast who shared her tips on how to completely childproof your home. This is what she had to say…
With your little ones running around all the time, you cannot but worry about the moment when you’ll hear a thud followed by a scream. You’d be surprised by all the potential hazards in your home that only your curious children can discover. However, nobody wants a home childproofed with bubble wrap on every corner. Luckily, you can easily ensure your child’s safety in your home while keeping the aesthetic appeal of your carefully planned interior design.
Although your kitchen might be the heart of your home where you can cook for and with your family, it’s also fraught with dangers. Surely, you know better than to leave knives within your child’s reach, but don’t be misled into thinking that they cannot hurt themselves. Thus, it’s better if the kitchen is off-limits for your little ones when you’re not at home.
Driven by infinite curiosity, children often enjoy opening kitchen cabinets as if a great secret were hidden inside. However, what is hidden inside are cleaning products, and, apparently, not well enough if your kids have found them. Since these products are toxic, it goes without saying that your children shouldn’t have access to them. Either move the chemicals to the upper cabinets, or install a childproof lock and a latch.
Other potential dangers in your kitchen are your stove and microwave that can be easily reached by your children, dishwasher and oven they can open and accessible cutlery and small appliances. To protect your children from cuts, burns and other injuries, you should ensure that these appliances and cutlery are out of their reach – either keep them on the top shelves, or locked in a cabinet. Make sure to remove stove knobs when you’re not cooking, or use a plastic or metal stove guard that can be attached to the front.
The bathroom is another danger zone that requires careful childproofing. First and foremost, make sure to use slip-resistant mats that will keep your children from slipping even if a puddle of water remains after showering. Afterwards, place all your pills in a locked medicine cabinet or a drawer, and keep the key away from your kids.
To prevent your child from drinking a shampoo because it seems so colourful and yummy, keep all your toiletries locked – you can use a latch or place them in a childproof container. In addition, keep your hair dryer and curling iron under lock and key, as well, and under no circumstances should you keep them plugged in.
Finally, your toilet can seem quite fun to your toddler, who might stick their head in to see what’s at the bottom, fall over and drown. Therefore, you need to keep the lid down and use a latch to prevent your kid from opening it.
Since your children probably spend a lot of time playing it the living room, it’s of the utmost importance to childproof every corner. Start by placing all “small” dangers like batteries, candles, photo frames, figurines and remote controls out of your kids’ reach by putting them on high shelves, or locking them in drawers. Everything they can swallow or break should be out of their sight.
Once you’ve finished, you should tackle bigger problems, such as your unmounted TV or unprotected coffee table. Your children can be tempted to climb onto the TV, and the set can fall down leading to serious injuries. It’s better if you have your TV properly mounted to avoid such accidents. In addition, make sure to childproof the edges of your coffee table, especially if it’s made of glass. You can remove the glass table altogether if you think it’s too risky.
Exposed wires, and unprotected power strips and sockets are among the greatest hazards for your children, who are always tempted to stick something into the holes. You should keep them all covered, and if possible out of reach. If there are any exposed wires, you should contact an electrician to fix the problem. It’s always good to have a contact number of a level 2 electrician in Sydney, who can provide immediate assistance. It’s better to act as soon as possible when it comes to these hazards because they are extremely dangerous for young children.
Your child’s bedroom should be thoroughly childproofed since they spend a lot of time here, even when you’re not around. Firstly, make sure that the crib is set up properly – lower the mattress once your kid can sit up, remove all the stuffed toys that can help them climb out of the crib or lead to suffocation. If you have a drop-side crib, replace it with a fixed-side one – drop-side cribs are dangerous because the drop side can break and trap your child.
To completely childproof your kid’s room, install window guards if the windows are too low, and make sure that the blinds are cordless. Secure all the heavy furniture by anchoring it to the wall, keep the small toys locked when you’re not around, and install drawer stops to prevent drawers from opening all the way.
Once you childproof your home, you’ll be at peace, and your kids can safely play in your house. Just make sure to leave no stone unturned to ensure your children’s safety.