It’s amazing to watch babies and toddlers learn new skills every day, like crawling, walking or throwing small objects around. In a span of a few months, they go from adorable cuddly infants to tiny adventurers eager to explore every corner of the house. There’s no question that keeping an eye on your little ones is incredibly important, but making small adjustments around the house to can give you a greater peace of mind knowing your child stays safe all day. Here’s a quick and easy guide to baby proofing your home.
Make Use of Baby Gates
Babies love exploring different rooms, but you can keep them from walking into places they shouldn’t be in like steep stairs, kitchens or near electrical outlets.
Baby gates are extremely useful for making sure your baby doesn’t climb up and down the stairs without your guidance, or at least until they’re tall enough to reach each step and hold on to the railings. There are plenty of baby gates available on the market, but pay attention to the way the baby gate is designed. Make sure the grid is narrow and evenly spaced to prevent your child from getting stuck. Also, parallel vertical poles make it difficult for babies to climb over the gate. (That’s a good thing).
Fabric baby gates are good options too, especially when they’re sturdy. The soft texture of the fabric and the lack of poles mean climbing isn’t an option.
Some pet gates can also be re-purposed into baby gates, as they serve as physical barriers equally well. However, the diagonal spaces and the slanted lines of this geometric gate increase the chances for babies and toddlers climbing over, or getting an arm stuck. It’s the same reason baby gates featuring horizontal panels are not advisable options either.
Keep Risky Rooms Out of Reach
If your home comes with a fireplace, it’s best to keep it covered when a toddler shares the same space. There are plenty of great ways to cover the fireplace, but this one’s my favorite – a magnetic chalkboard wall. Sassy Wife Classy Life shows us how she made her own functional fireplace cover using items you can easily find in a hardware store.
Keeping knives and dinnerware out of reach is no question, but there’s still plenty of items in the kitchen that are better off locked and secured. Ovens, dishwashers, washing machines, cupboards containing cleaning supplies can be kept hidden from curious hands with handy cabinet locks.
Once your baby learns how to push and pull, all electrical wires should be out of bounds from the little ones. That said, sockets around the house should also be kept covered with electrical outlet covers to prevent metal objects from making their way in.
Watch Out for Corners and Edges
Learning to walk is fun, but bumping into sharp corners and edges isn’t.
Beds, play pens, or cribs can use extra padding with bumper pads to keep them cushioned while they play or rest. Nowadays, most bedding sets come with matching bumper pads so you can keep the nursery stylish and safe.
Coffee and dining tables are notorious for being stumbling blocks around the house, even for adults. Corner guards or foam pieces can be placed around delicate edges to make sure your baby’s adventures are free from harm.
Soften Up the Floors
Even at the age where toddlers can walk around and hold their own weight, slipping on objects or losing their balance is always a possibility.
Carpets are great for adding extra cushion to the floors, not to mention being soft on their tiny feet. But if carpets are too difficult to maintain, large area rugs are great alternatives too – just make sure they’re non-skid.
Foam mats that can be pieced together come in handy for playrooms or the bathroom, where it might be more practical to have a surface you can wipe clean from spills. They’re bright, colorful and very light. Save the hardwood flooring or cream carpets for the future.
How are you baby proofing your home? Have your tried any of these tips before? We want to hear from you! Share your tips in the comments below.