How to Baby and Toddler Proof a House

So you have a little one, who has not started crawling yet.Now is the time to child proof your home, so that when they do start moving, you do not have to worry as much or run around child proofing your home, while trying to bond and care for your child.
Here are a few ways to make your home safe for your child.

1)The best way to start child proofing your home is to get on your hands and knees!Yes, on your HANDS AND KNEES AND CRAWL AROUND THE ENTIRE HOUSE. You may want to put a more appropriate pair of pants on because you may get a little dirty and doing this may cause some wear and tear to your clothes in general.
Be sure to observe everything you see.Ask yourself if what you see could cause harm to your child. If the answer is yes, then move whatever it is to a place where they cannot reach, yet anyway.

2)Go around the house and find all the ELECTRICAL OUTLETS.For everyone you find (even if you do not think it will pose a threat) cover them with or input safety covers that do not come off. The ones that you stick in on your own are useful, but only up until your little one masters how to get them out, which then proves pretty useless.There are special safety plugs that you can put it the cover the outlet and have a special kind of slide to move over when there is a plug in it.

3)Check for LOOSE AND OTHER ELECTRICAL CORDS.If there are too may in one spot, either take some out, and find another place for them, or tape them down in a way that you strongly trust that, they will not be a problem for your child. Another thing to do, is to find something that can go in front of the outlet. You could also tape them underneath the carpet, so they are out of your child’s view.Some people find this inconvenient or not possible, and take toilet paper rolls and cover them with them. Taping them back up after cutting them in half so the cord/s can go into them The “out of sight out of mind” phrase holds to to a certain point. They eventually will know where things are even if they are not visibly noticeable.At this point your child will know and understand language even if they cannot yet speak it. This is a time to take advantage on setting rules and consequences as well as reasons for the rules.Trust me a child less then two years of age understand way more then we adults like to believe.

4) Place all CHEMICALS AND MEDICATIONS IN A (PREFERABLY LOCKED) CUPBOARD OR SHELF/STORAGE.Many parents put all harmful chemicals under the sink, so they are easily accessible. It usually is not a problem, but if it is possible to put them somewhere that is higher as opposed to lower, it would be better.
To lock cupboards that you know could be potentially harmful to your child or something you just do not want them to handle, then you can buy some cabinet latches that latch onto the handles of a shelf and open very easily for adults.

5)LABEL ALL HARMFUL CHEMICALS AND MEDICATIONS ETC, CLEARLY ON THE BOTTLES/BOXES/CONTAINERS.This way you know what is what and if for some reason your child does get a hold of it, you will know what the procedures are for that chemical.
6)CREATE A LIST OF NUMBERS FOR EMERGENCIES.Put it somewhere that is easily identifiable and can be seen by everyone in the home. This could include, but is not limited to poison control, ambulance, police, fire,and/or a health links number for questions you have that you do not know the answers to.

5)COVER ALL ENTRANCES AND STAIRWELLS that you do not want your child to access from fear they may fall down or really injure themselves.
There are all sorts of gates out there for this purpose sold in baby stores.

6)MOVE PLANTS AND FLOWERS TO AVOID THE CHILD BEING POISONED.Of course you do not have to be without these beautiful home decorations that bring a sense of calm to your home.Just put them somewhere that your child cannot access.Hang them from the ceiling or put in a high shelf that your child cannot reach.if you are unsure that it is not high enough or too low, get on your hands and knees and if you can reach them you have your answer.

7)PLACE DOOR GRIPPERS ON DOORS SO THAT THE POSSIBILITY OF YOUR CHILD GETTING THEIR FINGERS SLAMMED IN THE DOOR IS LESSENED.

There are so many products out there today to baby proof your homes.Some people believe it is better to be safe then sorry. There are safety plugs. that tell you what the temperature of the water is. when you bath your child. There are safety clips. for toilet seats and little attachments. for sliding doors and knobs to prevent your child. from accessing certain things. that are deemed unsafe.There are special window locks. and anti slip stickies for carpets.The list goes on and on.It is up to you. what you want to do, to make sure your child is safe and secure. You want to make sure that you are comfortable in your home, and feel a sense of relief knowing that you have done all you could do, to make certain, your child is safe.A word of caution about making your home safe for your child.

Children comprehend language and understand what you are saying, even if they do not yet have the ability to speak yet.Sometimes we have a tendency to forget this, and end up making the home so safe, that your child is limited to what they can explore and learn about their environment. Making your home safe, is also about discipline and guidance.If you know that your child could get hurt climbing up a chair, are you going to remove any and all furniture that posses as a threat? If you did this, you would have no furniture.Things like this, requires talking to your child and teaching them what is safe.It requires you, to allow them to observe and explore, and yes, sometimes allowing them to get hurt.Humans are hands on. They learn from doing and from their mistakes.Just like an adult learns, that it is best to to wear oven mitts when cooking, a child will learn that climbing up the chair, may result in falling down, because that is what happened last time.Learn to guide your child’s behaviors and praise them when they listen. Allow them to explore their environment and world around them, and try to avoid saying “no” every time they do, or about about to do something you think will be harmful.. I am not saying to allow your child to get hurt.What I am saying, is that you need to allow your child, the freedom to explore in a safe environment.If you limit their access to everything that is harmful, chances are, that when they go somewhere else that is not child proofed as much, they will more then likely, attempt to access whatever it is, with more determination. Sure you can child proof your home with every single new and inventive product out there.But ask yourself.Is this a prison or a home?

If you are not sure that something in your home posses as a threat to your child, get back on your knees and explore the world through your child’s eyes…Once you are done making things safe, go on your knees again and see what you can explore.If everywhere you go their is something that does not allow access, and you notice that everywhere you go is a red flag, imagine what your child would feel.Imagine what it would be like if you went to a carnival with your friends and everywhere you turned the signs said “too short”, “no adults allowed”, “sorry this ride is only for children”, “only people twelve and up can play this game”, etc. World it make you feel good or bad? Would you feel like you were having fun or that there really was not anything you could do and end up leaving.
Think the same way when you child proof your home…..Do a hands and knees check before and AFTER.This is important and will help you to figure out what is what.

7)PLACE HOT FOOD AND DRINKS OUT OF YOUR CHILD’S REACH UNTIL THEY COMPREHEND THAT HOT IS OUCH.If you are sitting in the living room watching the television, then I would say it is okay, as long a you were willing to help your child understand, why he/she should not touch it…..If you are not able to be in the specific area, all the time, then place the cup/plate in a place higher then your child’s reaching level.Just to be safe.

8)Place your purse or personal bag out of your child’s reach if there are things in ti that you would deem unsafe.Put it the closet or cupboard.I have had experiences where parents/ guardians/ caregivers have left their purse out on a counter top and a child got a hold of it and opened it up and took her pills.The child was rushed to the hospital. Thankfully the child was alright.If you do not carry anything in your purse that could harm your child then put it away.Of course that is all up to you.

BE SAFE AND HAVE FUN……………….and never be to cool to go on your hands and knees.