Children are little explorers. It is how they learn: babies are sensory learners and need to be allowed to experiment, to touch, taste and search their environments. As a parent, you should encourage their learning and exploration of their environment, while also ensuring they are safe at all times. So, if you are a first-time parent and your little one is becoming more and more mobile, you need to ensure they have a safe home to explore.
ROUND ‘EM UP
Your needs are, of course, going to depend on the layout of your house. If your house has a steep staircase, then a gate or barrier is an important accessory to incorporate into your home safety plan. As your child’s confidence grows, they may try to climb up and down the stairs before they are ready to, which can result in bad accidents.
Keeping gates or barriers at either end of the staircase will ensure your baby doesn’t go venturing downstairs unsupervised. Any good baby store in Australia will stock a range of quality gates and barriers.
On the note of barriers – playpens or play yards can also be a great aid; allowing you to get work done, while knowing that your baby is safe and able to play on their own for a short while. Finding ways to give yourself a bit of peace of mind, and time to get chores or odd-jobs done, can go a long way for your own mental health.
You don’t want to spend a full day completely focussed on your child (even though part of your brain always will be). It is exhausting and can cause excessive stress levels. Just make sure your baby has enough entertainment with them in the play yard, and continuously check on them.
LIGHT THE NIGHT
The night is dark and full of terrors – according to Game of Thrones and most children. Most of us can remember being scared of the dark as children, so giving your baby a little glowing friend in the dark will help them sleep soundly through the night. The use of nightlights also makes checking in on your baby that much easier. You are far less likely to disturb your baby’s sleep if they have a nightlight.
The last thing you want to do late at night is flick on the main light switch, or flash a torch around their room, waking your baby up, and then have to spend the next hour or so settling them again. Baby nightlights also come in a variety of styles and colours to suit your baby’s personality.
Keep your baby away from dangerous or valuable items by locking cupboards they may have access to with cupboard straps or clips. It’s also a good idea to move any dangerous substances to higher ground. Start keeping cleaning products and breakables in higher cupboards to safeguard against possible interactions.
One danger zone is the cutlery draw – be sure to have a clip or strap on all cutlery, knife, and kitchen utensil drawers. Even a cheese grater can cause some serious harm to your baby’s delicate skin.
A lot of the ins and outs of baby-proofing your home involves using your common sense. If something looks dangerous – don’t take a chance on it. Even electrical cords and plugs are danger zones. So, if anything looks even mildly dangerous, close it off or move it out of reach. It’s worth a bit of extra hassle or inconvenience for you, to ensure that your baby is kept safe at home, and is able to explore and learn about their world in safety.