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How to accident-proof your home when you have kids


Safeguard your setting so if your child does some solo exploring, he less likely be injured. - Getty Images
Safeguard your setting so if your child does some solo exploring, he less likely be injured. - Getty Images

One minute, your baby is sitting right next to you, the next minute they're gone. Who knows what danger lurks in your seemingly safe home?

Safeguard your setting so if your child does some solo exploring, they are less likely be injured. Check out these safety tips:

1. Don’t let hot water get too hot

You can avoid your little one getting scalded — from steam or hot bath water — by setting the hot water heater below 49 C. Babies and young children, with their sensitive skin, are particularly at risk

2. Secure heavy furnishings so they don’t topple over

Anything from a dresser to a TV could suddenly fall on a child who’s playing nearby. To prevent an accident, install anchors (also called restraints or tethers) from the furniture to a wall stud.

3. Be aware of danger with window blinds and shades

The cords found on many blinds and shades pose a choking hazard when a child plays with the cords, which becomes looped around his neck. According to the National Safety Council, the greatest group at risk are one to four year olds, who become more curious as they become more mobile. To avert a tragedy, buy cordless blinds or don’t position cribs, beds, high chairs or play yards near windows.

4. Watch out for falls

As much as you’d like to cover your child in bubble wrap, that’s an unrealistic solution. Use extra precaution when your little one is in a highchair, on the changing table, on the playground, near open windows without guards, or in an unlocked car seat. Make sure to put strong gates at the top and bottom of any accessible staircases.

5. Place nonskid rubber mats in the shower and bathtubs

To reduce the risk of falling in the bathroom, make sure you provide a safe surface for a young child to stand on. According to the Centers for Disease Control, falls are among the leading accidents in the home, resulting in everything from broken bones to death. While you’re at it, get a non-skid rug for the kitchen too.

6. Keep toxic cleaning and medicinal products out of reach of young children

Poisoning is a very real household threat. A toddler sees an open bottle of cleaning solution and thinks it’s soda, or he picks up an open vial of medication and thinks it’s candy. Store these in cabinets installed with childproof locks.

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