Before baby arrives, you need to get your home in order. Not only is safety a priority for your little one, but you also want to protect your home from the chaos and destruction that baby will bring. Okay, I’m slightly exaggerating on that last point, but parents out there will know what I mean!
Going room from room, consider the following:
In your living room, you may want to change your carpeting. Not only will lumpy carpeting (or rugs) be a health and safety hazard in waiting for your little one, they may not be adequate for the various spills your child will inflict on them. Consider replacing your carpets with something stain-resistant, using sites such as Carpet One to check out your options. If you have a tv on a stand, know that this is an accident waiting to happen, especially when your little one learns to climb, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to affix it with wall mounts. And no matter what kind of fireplace you have in your living room, install heat-resistant gates to guard your little one from a painful burn (as well as a trip on the hearth).
In the nursery, there may be safety issues you haven’t thought about. If there are corded blinds on the windows, know that they can be a strangulation hazard. You need to invest in cordless window coverings to protect your little one, especially when they become inquisitive. And considering children do love to explore, you should also add other items to the room, from a window guard to prevent your child from falling out, to power-strip covers and plug-socket protectors to keep out those wandering fingers.
In the kitchen, your first port of call is to stop baby from wandering in there in the first place. Considering the amount of hazards, from hot stoves to sharp implements, you should buy a baby gate to block access. You should remove any hazardous materials from your lower cabinets (chemicals, etc.), or at the very least, install safety latches on them to prevent doors being opened. To stop your child turning the oven on and creating a fire hazard, place childproof covers over oven knobs, and for extra safety, install a stove guard to protect the hands of your little one.
In the bathroom, the biggest danger is a fall, especially on the wet and slippery surface of your floor. Buying a slip-resistant mat will prevent such an accident happening. If you keep medications or cleaning products in this room, you need to keep them above child height (and away from climbing surfaces), or purchase extra storage space (with lockable compartments), to prevent your child getting their hands on them. And to prevent your child from falling down the loo (it has happened), you should also invest in a toilet lock to stop your child from lifting the seat.
We hope this simple advice has been useful to you, but if you have any further ideas on baby-proofing the home, let me know what you have purchased and added to the rooms in your house. Take care, and thanks for reading!