Continued from Childproofing Your Home: Part 1
One of the most injury-prone areas of any property is the kitchen. In most houses, there may already be a playpen where the housewife can put the baby or toddler in while she cooks. However, as the toddler becomes older, confining him in the playpen will be more difficult than ever. Sometimes, your toddler may venture into the kitchen because he had always seen mommy going in there to fix food and drinks. How do you childproof your kitchen?
First of all, keep all your kitchenware away from the edges of counters and tables. Table cloths may be pretty, but you do not want to have these cloths dangling from the tables where your toddler may pull on. If your child pulls the table cloth, things will fall from the table together with the cloth, which may be knives, forks, boiling water, hot soup or anything that you put on the table.
You may also want to make sure that the pot handles are facing towards the back of the stove. Your child may grab the handles when you are not looking, spilling all the contents on him, potentially scalding and burning him in the process.
Also, keep all sauces, herbs and spices out of reach. If your child is old enough to understand, educate your child to identify hazardous materials using some warning stickers and sticking them on the poisonous and hazardous items. These items with warning stickers should serve as a reminder to your child to not touch them or even get near them.
There are a lot of horror stories about children drowning in bathrooms. The first thing you want to do is to make sure that your toddler will not be going into the bathroom without your supervision. Install a toilet lock or latch, and make it a habit to latch the toilet from the outside so that your baby will not sneak in there when you do not notice it.
If you are already potty training your toddler and you give him the freedom to use the toilet, you may want to install toilet locks to keep the lids closed. Toddlers are top heavy, so they may actually lean and fall into the toilet or the bathtub easily. They may also drown very easily, even with just one inch of water.
Some of you might have electrical sockets for hair dryers or shavers. Unplug them to prevent electrocution upon contact with water in the bathroom, and cover the unused electrical points with outlet protectors or safety caps. If you could, install a ground fault circuit interrupter to your electrical points in both the bathroom and the kitchen. These will turn off the electricity if the appliance falls into water.
Hallways and Staircases
Keep your home décor to a minimum or place all decorations on a high table that the child would not be able to reach. Any object that is shiny or colorful will attract their curiosity and cause them to venture out. In large homes like a bungalow, they could easily get lost. Make sure the child is confined to a particular room or placed in a playpen when you are busy doing chores. You could also attach a child-proof gate at the doors to keep them from venturing outside a safe area.