Baby Proofing Your Home

Here is a room-by-room guide for what to do from the very beginning.


Ideas for the crib and other furniture:

  • Look for the Juvenile Product Manufacturer's Association sticker
    • This means the crib has met its safety standards
  • Buy a crib new, because safety standards have changed over the years
  • Don't buy a crib with splinters, cracks, missing parts or peeling paint
  • Don't choose a crib with raised corner posts (more than 1/16 of an inch) or decorative cutouts in the headboard
  • Crib slats should be two and 3/8 inches away from each other or less
  • Make sure all screws, bolts and other hardware are securely put in to help make sure the crib doesn't fall down
  • Be sure the crib mattress fits snugly
  • You should be able to slide just one finger between the mattress and the side rails and headboard
  • Don't put pillows, soft bedding, heating blankets, heating pads or stuffed animals in the crib
  • Do not put the crib or changing table near a window, and make sure the cords to any blinds are out of reach
  • Always use the safety belt when your baby is on the changing table, and don't turn your back for one second
  • Put a slip-free rug under the changing table and crib to give some protection if there is a fall
  • Space heaters should be at least three feet away from the crib, bedding and draperies to help avoid a fire

When your baby can pull up or stand on his or her own:

  • Remove bumpers, pillows, stuffed animals and other toys from the crib so your baby can't use these to climb on
  • Take down mobiles and hanging crib toys
  • Remove strings on crib toys and pacifiers if they are more than seven inches long, so they do not become a strangling hazard
  • Put the mattress on its lowest setting
  • Make sure drapery and blind cords are out of the baby's reach by tying them or using a safety gadget that rolls them up out of reach


  • Don't hold your baby while you're cooking
  • Put your baby down while drinking hot coffee or tea
  • Avoid warming baby bottles in the microwave - the milk or formula may heat unevenly and hurt your baby

When your baby can walk or crawl:

  • Use baby gates or a playpen to limit the parts of the room your child can get to
  • Store all cleaning goods out of reach or in a locked cabinet that's high off the ground
  • Store alcohol in a locked cabinet
  • Put knives and other sharp items and heavy pots in an out-of-reach or locked cupboard
  • Put knob protectors on stove knobs if they are on the front of the stove
  • When cooking, turn pot handles toward the back or side of the stove where they are less likely to hang off the edge and be pulled down by little hands
  • If you can, use only the back burners
  • Keep chairs and step stools away from counters and stove
  • Keep electrical gadgets unplugged and out of reach and use outlet covers to keep baby from sticking his or her fingers into the sockets
  • Keep electrical cords wrapped short so when they are in use, children cannot pull coffee makers, toasters or other gadgets off of counters
  • Avoid using tablecloths or runners that your child could pull down
  • Put the trash can in a locked cabinet, or use one with a child-proof lid
  • Put safety latches on cabinets so that baby can't get into unsafe places, and keep the dishwasher soap and other household poisons in a high cabinet out of reach of little hands - toddlers can figure out how to open safety latches


  • Set your water heater no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Turn on cold water first, and turn it off last when using faucets
  • Fill the tub up with only enough water to covers your baby's legs
  • Always test bathwater with your elbow before putting baby in the tub
  • Never, ever leave your baby alone in the bath, even for a few seconds
  • Unplug everything that is not being used and store it away from the tub, sink and toilet

When your baby can walk or crawl:

  • Put a safety latch on your toilet
  • Ask other family members to lower the toilet seat and keep the bathroom door closed at all times
  • Put a non-skid mat or decals in the bathtub
  • Put a non-skid rug or mat on the bathroom floor
  • Use child-proof caps on all bottles of pills and tablets
  • Store medicines and supplements in the containers they came in, and keep them in a locked cupboard
  • Keep mouthwash, toothpaste and cosmetics out of reach
  • Keep any sharp items like scissors, razors and tweezers locked up

[references] Copyright © 2010 LimeHealth

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