You want to bring your new baby home to a warm and welcoming environment. While you’re readying your home for the new baby, make sure baby safety is part of your preparation checklist. Preparing your house for baby safety early can help prevent future injuries.
Your baby will spend a lot of time in their nursery, so it’s important that this room provides them with a safe place to have sweet dreams. While planning your nursery keep the following in mind:
- Look for a crib that is sturdy, well constructed with slats no more than 2 3/8 inches apart.
- Keep bedding to a minimum and avoid pillows.
- Make sure all furniture is stable and cannot be toppled over easily. While infants cannot yet crawl or pull themselves up, having sturdy surfaces is still an important aspect of baby safety.
- Install window locks.
- Do not place furniture under windows.
- Use safety gates to block off dangerous areas like stairs.
- Never leave an infant carrier unattended on a counter top or high surface.
- Drapery and mini-blind cords present a hazard in every home, keep them out of reach.
Kitchens and bathrooms can both be filled with hazards to young children. These guidelines can help make your kitchens and bathrooms safer:
- Set the water heater in your home to less than 120 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent scalding.
- Never leave your baby alone in the bathtub or bath ring, even if there is very little water in it. Children can drown in as little as 2 inches of water.
- Never leave your child alone in a room with an open heat source such as a fire, lit stove, candles or heaters.
- Keep sharp objects such as scissors, razors, knifes, knitting needles and cooking utensils out of reach.
- Keep all hazardous materials, including alcohol, medications and vitamins, cleaning products, fertilizers and poisons out of reach and/or in locked cabinets.
- Never heat baby food or bottles in the microwave. Microwaves can create dangerous hot spots. Be sure to check the temperature of prepared bottles on your arm before giving to your baby. Learn more about breast milk storage.
- Install safety latches on drawers and cabinets that are within a child’s reach.
Make the entire house a safer place for your family by following these guidelines for baby safety:
- Do not use pest or weed control poisons when your child is around.
- Make sure all the paint in the house—including walls, railings and furniture—is lead-free.
- Remove all houseplants that are poisonous.
- Do not allow young children to play with toys or household items that are smaller than 1 ¼ inch in diameter.
- Keep long cords for computers, phones or other electronics up and out of reach.
- Appliance cords should not dangle from the counter-top.
- Cover unused electrical outlets with safety caps.
- Never leave your child unattended in the car.
- Always use a car seat when transporting your child. A properly installed infant car seat is required for driving your baby home from the hospital.
- Prevent access to pet bowls of water and food.
- Install a fence around the pool if applicable. Never leave a child unobserved in a pool.
- Install a smoke/fire detector in each room and CO2 detector.
- Post emergency phone numbers by the phone or on your refrigerator.