February 25th, 2012
How does one childproof their home without turning it into a maze of gates, walls, guards and padded corners?
We consulted baby guru Desiree Cluff who believes in teaching children what they can and can’t touch, rather than making everything inaccessible.
1. Teach your child some basic sign language, like “hot”, “stop”, “danger”, and “pain.” Use the sign sharply when they approach dangerous areas (the fireplace, the stove) and make sure they understand it is a no go zone. It needs to be repeated a few times, but is a great way to teach your children boundaries.
2. Have a drawer in the kitchen that the baby can access, for example, a bottom drawer full of tupperwares. This way they can have some fun in the kitchen, but won’t be getting into your knives and breakables.
3. People often drop their cribs too late. Don’t wait until there is an accident, drop it as soon as children are mobile.
4. We all know about dangerously hot water heater temperatures, but most people don’t bother to lower them. Do it, burns are never fun.
5. Be careful of baby products that aren’t safe. Baby oil is a mineral oil (made from petroleum) that can be fatal if ingested. Don’t leave a bottle in arms reach near the change table, or, even better, don’t keep a bottle at all. Use a natural, safe vegetable oil on your baby’s skin. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
For a one on one consultation about child proofing, sleep coaching, or toilet training, contact Desiree Cluff at Rockababy, www.rockababy.ca
Editor’s tip: For latches, send photos of your cupboards and drawers to Babysecure.ca and their safety guru will recommend the best type of safety feature.