ESSENTIAL WAYS TO BABY-PROOF YOUR HOME

How to baby-proof your home

Those about to become first-time mums, will need to start thinking about how to make the home safer for your child. It's best to start these plans early as those nine months will disappear very quickly. Although your baby is unlikely to ever be out of sight as a newborn, it still pays to cover all the bases.

Keep hazardous materials out of reach

Start by checking your home for hazardous materials, and ensure these are all in locked areas or high places. That includes cleaning items, such as bleach and detergents as well as electrical cords. Ensure any medications, multivitamins or supplements are out of reach for children, even those who aren’t walking or crawling yet.

You can purchase sliding safety latch covers for electrical outlets around the home.

Don't leave anything hanging down from the benches in the kitchen, even things that you wouldn’t normally perceive as dangerous. Its better to get into ensuring pot handles face inwards, and tea towels are kept away from edges before your bub even starts to crawl so that when the time comes, they’re all automatic behaviours. In addition, make sure that any potentially hazardous items, like knives, are stored in the top drawers or cupboards with specifically designed fasteners or locks so they can’t be reached or pried open by little fingers.

Remove tumbling hazards

Stairs can be a major hazard for nimble babies as soon as they begin to crawl. Consider locked gates at the top and bottom of staircases and don't forget to add a railing for when they're old enough to walk up and down. If you have a porch, veranda or balcony, make sure they have a locked gate, as well as a safety railing encompassing the whole area. Safety rails shouldn't have bars or footholds that your child could use to climb. In any case, make sure your child is always supervised in this area, even when there are safety features in place.

Don’t forget about your health!

“Baby-proofing” your health is also an important safeguard for new mums who may find they don’t give themselves enough attention, especially during those first few weeks and months after bringing your new baby home. Ensuring you get all the nutrients you need pre, during and post pregnancy can help give your family a healthy start.