No parent wants their child to be hurt or to suffer in any way. While some pain is inevitable, there are plenty of things that parents can do to protect their children and reduce the chance of their children suffering some of the common injuries that plague younger children. If you are trying to child-proof your house and your life, consider these areas.
Prevent Stair Injuries
For children that are learning to crawl and walk, stairs can seem like an exciting adventure. While it is important for your child to learn to crawl or walk up the stairs, according to Children’s Minnesota, it does come with an extra level of risk. Slipping, overbalancing, or missing a step is common among young children and toddlers. For a crawling child, following behind them is an easy way to allow them to practice climbing, while still being able to easily catch them if they fall. You should also teach them to slide down on their bellies going backwards, rather than crawling headfirst back down. For a child that is walking, consider having them hold onto your hand or a banister when first starting. If they insist on doing it on their own, as some toddlers do, you can follow along below them, as you would do with a crawling child. You should also consider installing gates at the top and bottom of the stairs, especially if the bottom of the stairs has tile or other hard floors.
Secure Heavy Objects
Children who are learning to walk will often pull themselves up on what they think is more steady furniture and lean their weight heavily on that. While that isn’t necessarily an issue normally, if that steady furniture isn’t actually steady and is just heavy, that extra weight could pull it away from the wall and down on top of the child. Additionally, when children are roughhousing, sometimes they grab furniture or run into things and can potentially knock them off balance. To prevent these accidents, according to ChildproofingExperts.com, make sure you secure any large or heavy furniture to the wall. Most large pieces of furniture come with wall attachments that allow you to attach them, but if they don’t there are plenty of options available at the local hardware store. They are easy to use and provide an added measure of safety for your family.
Practice Car Safety
Car accidents can be incredibly dangerous for young children. Their bodies are small and don’t deal well with the large amounts of force exerted on them by car accidents. Additionally, seat belts and airbags are designed with adult bodies in mind, not young children, so they can accidentally cause additional damage to young children in the event of a car accident. For young children and infants, it is important to keep them in car seats and booster seats until they are tall enough and weigh enough to be safe in a normal seat belt. According to Bruscato Law, properly using a car seat can reduce infant death in car accidents by up to 70%. You should also teach your children to be cautious about playing in the street and around cars. Children being run over by cars backing up is a huge tragedy, but an unfortunately common one. Not only should you be checking carefully behind your car, you need to teach your children to stay far away from any moving cars.
Lock Up Chemicals and Medicine
Children are forever curious, and they don’t always understand what is and isn’t safe for them to play with. According to Mission Health, chemicals and medicine are two highly dangerous substances that children often get into. Chemicals often have bright and exciting packaging and children may find the spray nozzles fun to play with. If your chemicals are stored in lower cabinets, consider investing in some child-proof locks for those doors.Teach your children that these are dangerous and not to be used without parental supervision. With medicine, never refer to it as candy, even if you are trying to get your child to take a pill they don’t want to take. Putting that association in their mind is dangerous. You should also make sure you store medications out of their reach and with child-proof caps.
The things that can cause childhood injuries are endless, but with some simple precautions, you can keep your children safe. Make sure you keep an eye on them and teach them to be careful. They are often smarter than you think and are quick learners.
Read this next: What You Should Know about CBD for Your Kids