Baby Proofing

17 Sep

The time has come for themummyyears to think about how to make our houses safe for the boys so we thought we would share our experiences with you.

Each house throws up different challenges and dangers. So, where to start?

  • Stair Gates: ACM has three steps into his bedroom, so we have opted for a Stair Gate at the top of his steps.  You don’t need one on every door – just work out the most strategic places for them – ie. at the bottom of your stairs and in their bedroom so, if you’re upstairs, you know when you pop them in their room they’re safe. When it comes to Stair Gates it’s tricky to recommend one brand – we would advise that you be guided by the size of space rather than style.
  • Room Dividers: HTC lives in a flat, but has a reasonable sized alcove in his kitchen so we lay foam tiles on the floor and put up a room divider to create an area for him in which he’s safe and can’t go near cupboard drawers and doors. We went for the Lindam Safe and Secure Playpen (http://www.lindam.com/product/play-pens/baby-play/safe-and-secure-play-pen–white.html) which can be a playpen, room divider, safety gate and hearth guard (not for use when fires are lit). For ACM, meanwhile, we opted for a Stair Gate across the kitchen door making it a no-go baby zone unless he is in his highchair.
  • Breakables: The lounge is a slightly trickier room to tackle as we do like a nice vase of flowers at floor level, but as us adults are still in charge, we’ve decided on a compromise. For the next couple of months we have put breakables out of our reach, but have left a few non-breakables at floor level so we can practice the word ‘NO!’ if the boys are headed that way.
  • Hazardous Substances: It’s time to start putting the bathroom cleaner away properly either in a cabinet out of reach or right back in the kitchen along with any other chemicals. This is the one cupboard we would recommend having a lock on.
  • Blinds: Double check your blinds as they should be fitted with a quick release snap on the chord. If not, fit a small hook half way up and start looping the cord out of the way.
  • See It From Their Perspective: A great idea is to get down at baby level and have a look see what suddenly looks interesting to them and dangerous to you! As tempting as it is to remove everything don’t – children have to learn, so although you may have a frustrating period of time when all the DVDs spend their time on the floor, but be consistent with your discipline and they will start to lack appeal. A good idea (if you have a lot) is to remove some of them so you are not spending too long picking them back up ten times a day!
  • Sharp Edges: For sharp corners, sticky protectors are an option, but they don’t last long with two big burly boys who like to use them as teething toys. Use a piece of foam and attach it securely yourself instead…we know, it’s not pretty, but it’s better than a trip to A&E.
  • Sockets: If you have exposed sockets, make sure you use sturdy covers or cover with furniture. We prefer to simply turn nightlights off as small hands can’t remove them.
  • Cot: If your tiny tot is starting to pull themselves up don’t forget to lower your mattress in the cot.
  • Toy Check: Remember to do a toy audit every so often – they do break and you don’t always notice so keep an eye out for spiky corners and jaggy bits.

Tackle each room separately but thoroughly and you’ll be breathing a sigh of relief in no time. Please let us know if you have any other top tips or tricks!

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