From the day your newborn arrives home, you’ll have some new concerns to keep in mind. And as your baby grows, they’ll discover more new fascinating areas and gadgets around your home. Here’s the ultimate room-by-room baby-proofing guide to keeping your baby safe day or night.
- Create a Safe Play Space: Your common area is a popular space in your home. Chances are, it’ll be popular for your baby, too. It’s time to ditch the glass decorations and poisonous plants and go for something more baby-friendly.
- Use furniture and chairs that are fit to their size for safety.
- Cover all electrical outlets and remove all glass or poisonous objects.
- Add playmats to hard floor surfaces in case they fall.
- Keep their toys in a bin that’s at their eye-level to avoid climbing.
- Have a clutter-free area and put away any dangerous items.
- Smoothen Sharp Edges and Corners: Some coffee tables, couches and corners come with sharp corners and edges that can hurt your little one’s hands, arms and legs when playing. Look for guards to place over these sharp areas to worry less about bumps and bruises.
- Make Different Furniture Choices: Your pre-baby living room may be filled with furniture and decor choices that aren’t safe for your little one. To prevent falls, make sure your couches, tables, ottomans and other furniture aren’t against windows. You’ll also want to make sure your television, soundbar and wall art are securely in place to prevent them from falling or your baby pulling them down.
- Research Any and All Plants: Plants may seem like a great, kid-friendly addition to your common area. But some plants are toxic and dangerous if babies nibble on them. Make sure you look into your plant choices before buying and keep them away from your little one, who may think it’s fun to play in the dirt.
- Add Childproof Latches and Locks: Bathrooms are filled with dangerous medications and products that could harm your baby. Add childproof locks to the cabinets to secure all shampoos, soaps, meds and other products that could be harmful if consumed. Consider moving the most dangerous items to higher cabinet space with child locks for extra precautions. You should also add a latch to the toilet to prevent them from playing with the water or jumping in.
- Be Extra Careful During Bathtime: First and foremost, never leave your child unattended in the bathtub for any reason. It only takes a few seconds for the baby to drown. And make sure that the water isn’t too warm before your baby gets in the tub. The Mayo Clinic recommends that the baby’s bath water should be no warmer than 100 degrees Fahrenheit. And, to avoid slips and falls, it’s best to add non-slip mats inside the tub and on the floor. This will help keep you and your little one from slipping and falling during bathtime.
- Be Careful with Cords and Outlets: Before the baby, you may have left curling irons or other appliances out on the counter. To avoid strangulation with cords, store your hairdryers and other gadgets away. And never leave them unattended as these heated appliances could quickly burn your baby. You should also cover outlets to keep them safe from babies who may be tempted to stick their fingers or other tools in them.
- Install a Fire Extinguisher and Other Safety Appliances: You never know when danger will strike. Kitchens present a number of new dangers including heat, fires and spills. Think ahead and install the right safety precautions. Make sure to get a fire extinguisher and locks for your oven, stove and fridge.
- Limit Your Little One’s Time in the Kitchen: It might seem cute to let your baby play with pots and pans while you cook, but it’s best to add a baby safety gate to keep them away from common dangers like heat, fire, sharp objects and ingredients. If you do allow your little one in the kitchen, keep a close eye on them. You should also have safeguards in place just in case they wander in the kitchen by themselves.
- Cleaning Products, Oils and Other Toxins: Now’s the time to move cleaning products and kitchen oils to higher cabinet spaces that your little one won’t be able to reach. Many products can be toxic, or even deadly, if children consume them. You should also move sharp utensils and any containers that could lead to suffocation. It’s best to add babyproof cabinet latches to keep items from being easily accessible.
Move Glassware, Dishes and Heavy Bakeware: You may also want to consider moving heavy dishes, stoneware and breakable items out of your baby’s reach. Heavy, delicate dishware can break and cause cuts and bruises. Avoid the screams by moving these items out of reach.
- Keep the Small Things Out of Sight: You may be tempted to leave out little things like jewelry, pens and hair ties. But leaving out these small items can lead to strangling, choking and other dangers. It’s best to keep them out of sight and out of reach.
- Add a Baby Monitor: To keep an eye on your baby in the nursery while you’re in your bedroom you’ll want to add a baby monitor. Use your smartphone to see the live activity of what your baby’s up to any time. Some monitors also send alerts when your baby is crying or sleeping face down.
- Be Careful What You Place on Your Dresser: Your dresser may seem like the ideal place to put your TV, picture frames and candles. But it’s best to secure your TV with a mounting kit, and use anchors to secure other furniture to the wall to avoid anything tipping over on your baby.
- Diapers, Creams and More: Keep these items out of reach of your baby. Plastics from diaper wrappings or creams can lead to suffocation, swallowing toxic items or other concerns.
- Furniture: It’s a good idea to keep the changing table, crib and other furniture away from windows. Soon your little one will be climbing and may use the furniture as leverage. It can be quite dangerous if they get on top of furniture that’s in front of a window. You should also make sure any heavy furniture is secure to the wall to avoid it tipping over.
- Windows: Be careful leaving the window open in your baby’s room – even for windows with screens. It’s best to add window guards or stops to prevent babies from opening windows.
- Changing Tables: Add a safety belt or harness to your changing table to keep your baby from rolling or falling. But do not rely on the harness. Keep an eye on your baby and never leave their side while they’re there. Most changing tables should have a harness included.
- Crib: Make sure your baby has a safe slumber by following common crib safety tips.
- Do not use drop-side cribs or cribs that don’t meet the latest CPSC requirements
- Use a firm crib mattress
- Only use a fitted crib sheet, avoid loose blankets or covers
- Avoid toys or other hazards that could impact breathing if too close to the baby
Hallways, Stairways and Entryways
- Keep Hallways and Stairways Clutter-Free: To avoid trips and falls, keep your walkways free of storage bins or other gadgets — even temporarily. It’s easy for your baby to get into bins and gadgets that aren’t baby-friendly.
- Add a Baby Gate: Keep your little one safe from crawling up or falling down the stairs with a baby gate. And remember to never climb over the gate. Babies and toddlers often mimic what you do, which could be dangerous for their safety.
- Install Entryway Sensors: To avoid worrying about whether your child opened a door, install a home security system with entryway sensors to your windows and doors. Anytime a door is opened you’ll get a mobile alert and hear a chime.
- Make Sure Your Rugs are Slip-Free: Some rugs are a bit slippery at the bottom, making it easy for your child to slip and fall. And slippery surfaces aren’t the easiest way for your little one to crawl. And slip-resistant grips to the bottom of your rugs to secure them in place while keeping some decor in your baby-safe haven.
Other Safety Tips
- Regularly clean your floors and carpets to pick up small, hard-to-notice items that could be dangerous for your little one.
- Keep cabinet doors and other doors in the house closed as an extra safety precaution against common household dangers.
- Throw grocery and plastic bags away immediately after use. These might look fun for babies, but can lead to suffocation.
- Add a fence for your little one to play freely when you’re outside without going too far.
There’s So Much More
Babyproofing your home can be overwhelming, but this room-by-room guide will help you get started. Remember to keep your home’s unique needs in mind, including your floor plan, day-to-day uses and what works for you when keeping your baby safe. Browse Amazon’s top babyproofing products for customer recommendations and top expert picks.