Even the most vigilant parents can have a tough time identifying all of the considerable risks to a child that the average home may possess. Even when they think they are doing their best to protect their children, there are so many things that they may have overlooked. This is not helped by the fact that many products that are sold specifically for kids and the protections of children turn out to be less safe than one would expect.
Shockingly, around 500,000 children are injured in their own homes each year in the UK. Sadly, some of them will be injured fatally or develop life-long health issues as a result of their accident, and the bedroom is one of the most hazardous rooms in the home. So, what can you do to ensure your kids are protected in the bedroom?
Deal with Bedroom Hazards
One of the most common causes of childhood accidents in the bedroom is furniture. You will probably have heard about the six children who were not long ago killed by IKEA chests and dressers, which toppled over on them! If you have big dressers, bookshelves and wardrobes in the bedroom, it is important that you take steps to secure them to the wall. Most furniture comes with wall anchors that will prevent them from falling over when children do what they do and swing on, or try to climb up the furniture.
Bed bumpers and guards look great, and they stop your children from falling out of bed, but did you know that they can be extremely dangerous for children under 12 months old? Bumpers, along with soft toys and blankets in the bed, increase the risk of suffocation and strangulation, so remove them until your child is a bit older for a safe nights sleep.
Fit Baby Gates
Young children cannot be relied upon to stay put in their bedrooms, which is why it is so important that you take steps to secure them while they are in there. Fitting a safe, recommended baby gate is the only way you can keep kids in their rooms and away from the stairs, but you need to ensure that you fix the gates solidly to the wall. You should also choose a baby gate which is at least 22 inches high and which has slats that are under 3 inches apart, to prevent escape artist toddlers and to stop little hands and feet getting stuck.
One of the most important considerations you should make when kitting out a baby’s room is their mattress. There are lots of different cot mattresses available, from natural fibre mattresses to those stuffed with anti-allergy fillings, and the choice of material can either hinder or help your child sleep, but more important than the material of the mattress is whether or not it conforms to the BS 18777-10:1997. If it doesn’t, then it may not be safe for your precious baby to use.
Another thing to consider when buying a cot mattress is its size. If a mattress is to successfully support a baby, it should be between 8-10 centimetres deep.
You should also avoid using a second-hand mattress unless you know how it has been used and who it has been used by. That doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot of money on children’s mattresses because harrison mattresses are very affordable and they offer a lot of choices.
If you are using a fabric mattress, whether, for a baby or an older child, you need to vacuum it on a regular basis to get rid of any dust mites that could cause allergies.
Painting your new baby’s bedroom is one of those simple joys in life that mark a milestone and get you excited for the new arrival, but paint can be packed with toxic VCOs that don’t do anyone lest a brand new baby any good.
Thankfully, it is now possible to buy natural, eco-friendly paint, which although slightly more expensive than standard paint, does not contain any of the nasties you would find in the average can of paint. Use it, and you will all breathe easier at night.
Windows are a big hazard in any bedroom where a toddler might wander. So, it is always best to keep them locked if possible. Of course, when the weather is good, you may well want to let some fresh air into the bedroom, which is where a window guard comes in. Typically made from mesh, a window guard will allow you to open the windows in your children’s rooms, while providing a barrier to prevent them from taking a dangerous tumble.
Toddlers will stick their fingers in anything, including electrical sockets and there are few things which could be more dangerous to their health! Even if you are vigilantly watching your toddler, you only have to turn away for a second for disaster to strike, which is why you should always fix electrical socket covers over every socket in their bedroom and in the rest of the house too! It will give you peace of mind if nothing else.
Always check the bedroom for any choking hazards before you allow your children in there. Everything from Lego bricks to batteries can have serious consequences when they are swallowed, which is why you should keep young children’s rooms clean, tidy and you should regularly sweep/vacuum the area for any small bits that could have fallen to the floor.
Even if you do everything right and you think you’ve removed all hazards from your child’s room, there is still a slight chance that something could go wrong. Especially when your child is a very young. With that in mind it might be a good idea to keep a baby monitor in the bedroom. These days, you can get baby monitors that show video as well as sound, and they are a great way of keeping an eye on your young ones as they sleep. Peace of mind as a parent is vital and by taking these steps to ensure your child's safety, you will rest assured that they will remain safe.
Although there are many hazards in the home, they can all be avoided with a little vigilance from you - nevertheless it’s better to be aware of the dangers than missing them and have an accident happen.
This is a sponsored post.