Injuries caused by hazards inside and around the home occur rather often. Most of these injuries can be easily avoided by childproofing your home. There are many relatively inexpensive safety devices that can help protect the child around the home. Below are some of the devices available.
Safety locks and latches
Drawers and cabinets are a good place to keep poisonous substances and other potentially hazardous items such as medicines, lighters and sharp objects away from young children’s reach. They would however be ineffective if they aren’t locked. Installing locks and safety latches for drawers and cabinets in the bathroom, kitchen and any other area enhances child safety. The latches and locks must be strong enough to resist the children’s tugs and pulls. These devices usually cost between $3 and $10.
Door locks and knobs covers
Simply shutting the door is not always enough to keep children safe. Installing door locks and knob covers on doors to areas with hazards prevent the children from accessing them. These cost about $5. The covers must be strong yet still allow quick access to the area an area by an adult in case there an emergency arises.
Keep young preschool children from going into potentially dangerous areas such as pool areas and the stairs with safety gates. Costing at least $35, they effectively prevent falls from stairs and drowning in pools by restricting access. The gates must be strong, securely screwed to the wall and resistant to the children’s pushes and pulls. They should not have spaces large enough to accommodate a child’s head and neck in their design. This prevents the child from inserting her head through the space and getting stuck.
Smoke detectors should be installed on each floor of the house and especially in the kitchen and sleeping areas. For at least $15, these essential devices will sound an alarm to alert you whenever there is a fire in any part of the house. This gives you time to get the children to safety and stop the fire from spreading. Carbon monoxide detectors are also important safety devices to install.
Burns from hot water can be prevented by installing anti-scald devices on shower heads and faucets. These devices which cost up to about $30 help regulate the temperature of the water coming out; effectively reducing the risk of burns. Set the heater temperature to an appropriate temperature (120oF) to prevent burns.
Edge and corner bumpers
Costing anywhere from $10 to approximately $80, these devices cover sharp edges on fireplaces and corners. They help prevent the child from injuries as a result of falling or bumping against sharp edges and corners.
While installing safety devices protects the child, they would not be effective if not installed and used correctly. Therefore remind the adults and older children in the home to always leave the safety devices secured. Having these devices in place also doesn’t mean that the children should not be watched. Children who are determined have been known to find a way to disable them. The safety devices should also be checked regularly to ensure that they are in good condition.