When you own a new home, it’s exciting. But, when you have children, that excitement can also be dangerous. Here’s how to keep your little one safe and save your sanity.
The bedroom is an innocent place, right? Not so fast. It’s basically a room full of tall furniture. IKEA made big news when it voluntarily recalled a line of popular dressers after one fell over onto a 2-year-old boy, killing him. A single death might not seem significant, but statistics show one child dies every 2 weeks when something falls over and crushes the little one.
What can you do? IKEA encourages parents to adhere to its taller furnishings to the wall with a bracket. You can do the same with all furniture, if brackets are available. If not, you may need to buy some and retrofit your furniture to protect your child. Keeping your child out of the bedroom isn’t always an option, either. But, if you think you can manage it, childproof your door, close it at all times, and keep the kid out of there.
Once your baby starts to get mobile the floor becomes a veritable booby trap! All kinds of things get picked up and put into your baby’s mouth, so be extra aware of keeping floors clear. Think too about trip hazards if your baby is walking or experimenting with a walker. A baby walker for carpet can easily be derailed by loose items on the floor, or could pull out cables.
The Flat Screen T.V.
Flat screens are a modern marvel. It’s a T.V. that takes up virtually no space. But, it does take up space, and that space is usually on top of the furniture that’s being knocked over onto the child. An estimated 41% of emergency room trips involve televisions, with 65% of fatalities coming from falling ones. This is according to a January 2015 Consumer Product Safety Commission Report. A survey from Safe Kids Worldwide showed 48% of parents haven’t secured T.V.s and furniture.
You can see homes online from these guys at Bridgfords.co.uk, and get a good idea about which standard features come on homes for sale in various areas of the country. What you’ll find is many of the older homes do not have secured or safety windows. This is a problem.
Even on the first floor you need security windows. Trips, and slips, out of windows, down staircases, off bunk beds, and other places cause 150 child deaths per year. The falls are a leading cause of death. Nearly 2 million children age 12 and under visited the ER in 2013, according to the Safe Kids Worldwide organization. Window screens aren’t enough to prevent accidents either.
Parents need to install window guards that have a quick-release function. They also need to look into installing gates.
Cords dangling from the window blinds is another threat. While common, these are strangulation traps for small children. It seems so innocent. The cord gets wrapped around the child’s neck and can strangle him or her within seconds. Keep kids away from the cords is key, but so is properly managing the cords. Completely eliminating the risk is your best bet. Consider honeycomb shades with an internal cord, or a cordless roller shade.
Medicines are very dangerous to have in the house, but they may also be necessary. According to the Safe Kids organization, there are roughly 185 children taken into the ER each day after accidental ingestion of medicine. That’s 67,700 children every year. Always lock up your medicines, or keep them out of reach of children. Most medicines have safety caps on them that prevent a child from opening them. But, don’t rely on them alone.
Always keep the medicine locked in a medicine cabinet. Or, keep the meds in a container that is out of reach for your child.
Kids might not know they should pay stay away from the pods. There’s an increasing deadly confusion between laundry packets and dishwasher pods. They both look like candy, and more than 700 children age 5 and under experienced side-effects after getting into laundry packets between 2012 and 2013.
The problems include breathing trouble, eye burns, vomiting, and loss of consciousness. The solution is to lock away all dangerous products.
Door And Window Frame Lead
Most parents know the dangers of lead paint, and they may even have dealt with the issue in their home. But, for many, it’s hard to tell you have it without proper testing. And, once ingested, lead leads to kidney damage and can affect your child’s nervous system and blood cells. Even worse, the child can absorb 4 to 5 times the lead an adult can. At these high levels of exposure, it can cause convulsions and death.
Emma Harris worked as a realtor for years before leaving that line of work to raise her kids, finally getting involved in property investment. She is knowledgeable in all aspects of housing and enjoys writing informative articles to help others on their way to finding a new home.