Expecting a new baby is one of the most exciting (and nerve-wracking) times. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to babyproof your home and keep your little ones safe and secure during their first two years.

How to Babyproof Your Home

Keep the Crib Safe

You may want to line the crib with padded bumpers or provide infants with pillows, blankets, or stuffed animals to sleep with. However, the Consumer Protection Safety Commission (CPSC) warns that these items can cause suffocation. Make sure your baby’s crib is securely assembled and that the mattress fits it snugly with no gaps around the edges.

Babyproof to Protect Crawling Infants in Your Home

When your baby can crawl, it’s helpful to get down on their level and look for small objects or features that may be hazardous to a curious baby. In addition to installing standard babyproofing products (some are listed below), make sure you tuck away long curtain cords, remove magnets from the lower half of your fridge, and keep electrical cords out of the reach of children.

Use Electrical Outlet Covers

Plug-in outlet covers are an inexpensive way to keep your baby safe around electrical outlets. As children get older, they learn how to pry those covers off. At this point, install sliding outlet covers that close automatically, or box-shaped covers that will enclose both the outlet and electrical plug.

Install Cabinet Locks

You’ll want to add cabinet and drawer locks to TV consoles, drawers, and cabinets that contain potentially dangerous or toxic items. On kitchen and laundry room cabinets, these locks will secure cleaning products, paints, and other chemicals.

Apply Furniture Straps to Babyproof Your Home

Babies will pull up on furniture when they’re first learning to stand. When they do so, there is a risk that furniture, or items on top of the furniture, will fall on top of them. Apply straps to bookcases, side tables, and your television stand so these heavy pieces are secured safely to the wall.

Limit Access to Stairways

To protect children from falling down stairs or playing on the staircase, install baby gates at the bottom and top of stairwells. Instead of pressure-mounted gates, install gates that are mounted to the wall with sturdy screws and hardware. These cannot be pushed over as your child leans or pulls on them.

Babyproof Your Home for Toddlers

Once your baby starts walking, look for hazards at and above their line of sight. Toddlers will quickly learn how to climb furniture and use step-stools to access countertops and cabinets.

Restrict Unsafe Rooms

Bathrooms, laundry areas, and unfinished basements may contain toxic chemicals, dangerous fixtures, and other hazardous items. Restrict access to these rooms with items like doorknob covers or lever locks. Install appliance locks to front-loading washers and dryers.

Kitchen Safety

To prevent injury and fire, install stove knob covers to prevent your toddler from turning on the stovetop burners. Install an oven lock to stop children from pulling the door open while the oven is in use.

A few simple precautions go a long way in protecting your child and making your home more secure. Pay attention as your infant grows and watch for things he or she is curious about. Babyproofing is an ongoing process that will help to keep your little one healthy and safe.

Longs GCS Corp. Home Inspections offers inspections to customers in the lower Hudson Valley. Contact us to schedule our services.