When your little one starts crawling, you’ll need to make sure your home is safe enough to explore. Some safety tips might seem common sense, but there may be some hazards you haven’t considered, especially if this is your first baby. Here’s how to keep your baby safe
In the bathroom
Keep all medicines in a lockable cupboard, and keep toiletries and beauty products, cleaning products, electric toothbrushes, razor blades and other sharp objects out of reach.
Lower the toilet seat and lid when not in use.
In the nursery
- Keep your changing area tidy, with nappies, wipes and creams close at hand so you don’t need to leave your baby unattended for a second.
- Dress your baby in simple clothes, with no trailing or fussy bits to get tangled up in as they crawl.
In the kitchen
- Fit childproof catches on cupboards, but do leave at least one cupboard containing safe non-breakables – like plastic beakers or a small saucepan and wooden spoon – to help keep your little one busy while you’re in the kitchen.
- Keep dangerous objects out of reach – not just cleaning fluids and knives, but plastic bags and clingfilm, too. Lock up the rubbish bin if you can – it may be just a bin to you, but to your little one it’s a treasure trove.
- Put away the ironing board as soon as you’ve used it. Make sure there are no trailing leads from the kettle or iron.
- Use the rear rings on the stove, turn pan handles to the wall, don’t leave a chip pan unattended and keep all hot things out of reach.
- Scan the room for small objects that your baby could choke on.
- And of course, when your baby’s in their highchair, always do up the straps, and never leave them alone while they’re eating or drinking.
Around the house
- Fit loose mats and rugs with a rubber underlay to stop them slipping.
- Fit stair gates at the top and bottom of the stairs.
- Check all your furniture is stable and pad sharp corners. Get rid of that glass-topped table and don’t use tablecloths – your baby could pull them off, along with everything sitting on them.
- Use fireguards, guards for hot radiators and socket covers for empty electrical sockets.
- Fit safety catches on cupboards and close, wedge open or put slam stoppers on doors.
- Put heavy objects such as books and ornaments out of reach.
- Cover plants that can’t be put out of reach to stop tiny hands grabbing at soil. Also be aware that some plants and flowers are harmful, including autumn crocus and lily of the valley. Read the Royal Horticultural Society’s advice about harmful plants.
- Store away alcohol and all household cleaning products into cupboards with child locks.
- Avoid leaving your baby unsupervised, even if they are in a safe place, such as a playpen or carry cot. All these steps will mean that it’s much easier to keep your little one safe and sound.
Want more safety advice for your baby? Check out Stairs and baby safety. For more information about preventing children’s accidents, see The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.