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Ahh, I remember the days when I could leave my little one in the middle of the floor, run to the bathroom, and she would be right there smiling at me when I returned. As she grew we added a few baby gates to keep her contained. Seemingly overnight were forced to step up our childproofing game. Every day I see another message from a Mama asking the internet what they can do to keep their curious toddlers safe at home. Once they reach a certain age, baby gates just aren’t enough. When your child becomes mobile it is time to toddler proof your house.
Babies and toddlers are naturally curious, but before they can walk their curiosity is limited to what they can reach. Once they get the hang of those little legs, the world is theirs to explore. I am always amazed when I hear stories of the shenanigans toddlers have gotten themselves into. These stories are sure to make any mother’s heart skip a beat.
The trick is to be 2% smarter than your toddler. Seriously, you have to get down on their level and say to yourself “What looks like it will give mom a panic attack?” That is what you need to toddler proof. When baby gates just are cutting it here are just a few things you to make sure your curious toddler stays safe at home.
Lock chemicals out of their reach.
You can keep them in locked cabinets or on high shelves. There are many types of safety latches on the market these days. These magnetic ones are my favorite as we did not have handles on our cabinets. Another option is these safety straps that can be used to secure cabinets, drawers, and appliances.
While you want your kiddo to explore their home, you will want to keep them out of rooms that could have dangerous items. Baby gates work great for corraling kiddos into one area, but you can also keep the doors closed and if needed put a doorknob cover on the doors to prevent your crafty little human from sneaking in. Remember to look around see what might catch their eye…especially in the bathroom. Be sure to lock up the diaper rash cream, lotion, baby shampoo, pretty much anything that can be squeezed out if it’s container.
Adjust the Water Heater
I will be honest and say I didn’t even think about this one but now that my girl is becoming more independent she insists on washing her own hands. Even though our handles are marked, she sometimes forgets and turns on the hot water. By lowering the temperature of your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit, you can prevent your toddler from being accidentally scalded by hot water.
Don’t Forget the appliance
I mentioned early that these appliance straps are a must-have when toddler-proofing your house. You can use them on your refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, washer, and dryer. These appliances are very interesting for toddlers and can also be very dangerous. Using knob covers on the stove will prevent them from turning on the stovetop or gas.
Some plants can be poisonous to babies and toddlers and should be removed. Check your plants to make sure they are safe, if they aren’t I would recommend removing them altogether and replace them with faux plants or other decor items.
I don’t know what it is about outlets but kids LOVE sticking things into them. If your house is newer (built in the last 10 years), it may have come with protective outlets that only work when something is inserted into both sides at the same time. It’s always better to ere on the side of caution, so installing outlet covers is a pretty simple and inexpensive way to keep tiny fingers, toys, or anything else they can get into it, out.
If you have windows that can easily be opened, you might want to think about installing window guards. Also, move furniture away from windows if possible. Toddlers seem to be born with spiderman like climbing skills and will surely find to the top of a piece of furniture. Blind cords could cause a choking risk if they are accidentally wrapped around a little neck.
I don’t know about your kiddos, but my child loves playing with these things. It drives me absolutely nuts. I thought about getting these blind cords wraps to try to deter her from playing with them. However, another important reason to get them is to keep your little one from wrapping the cord around their wrists or even worse-their necks.
Again, something else I never even thought would be of interest is like Disney World to a toddler. Not only should you remove (or glue) the plastic caps, you should also check to make sure the door stopper doesn’t screw off (like mine do). If they do consider gluing them in place or removing them altogether.
Mamas, it is a must that you anchor what furniture you can to the wall. This is especially important in their rooms. I cannot count how many times I have found my toddler on top of something. By using the anchors, you can prevent the furniture from slipping onto your kiddo.
Kids should be free to explore their environments, but we can’t watch them every second of the day. Installing some or all of these childproofing methods can help kiddos learn boundaries within the home and hopefully prevent injuries.
Do you have any other childproofing ideas? Comment below or let us know on your Facebook page. We would love to hear from you.