August 28, 2014

Your baby will be spending most of their early life in their nursery, so you must protect your baby by making your nursery as safe as possible. In the last two parts of the series we discussed crib and bedding safety, now we’re going to talk about all the other miscellaneous parts of the nursery on this final part of nursery safety trilogy.

Window Safety
One vital area of safety is with windows. Open windows, poorly structured windows – it’s things like these that prove a grave threat to your baby. Take these precautions to make sure that they are as safe as possible in their little haven.

– Keep drapery and blind cords far away from the baby’s crib or changing table – anywhere that they stay for a period of time. A baby can either choke on the cord or strangle themselves with the cord. Cut the string so that it hangs down instead of loops, and tie the strings with a rubber band. If it still proves to be a significant problem, then opt for window treatment without cords at all.
– Never place a crib or baby’s play area to a window. Even if you’re pretty sure the baby can’t open the window, babies are pretty wily and resourceful creatures, and it is better to be on the safe and cautious side.
-Invest in some window locks. Some of these fit very tightly or screw on, and it’s more difficult for a baby to open than the typical window latch in most houses. If you have a window that slides, then you must put a sliding lock on it. These are available at most hardware stores.
– Window gates are similar to the door gates, and a good window gate is helpful for toddler safety as well. A toddler has more mobility and dexterity, and a lot of the window gate locks address this problem.
– Another safety problem is window collision, where a child can hit a window and possibly go through it. You can install safety glass or put a layer of safety film on all low-level windows. Toddlers should always be supervised when playing near windows.

Most of these other items can be found at a local hardware store or a mega-store like Target and Wal-Mart. Do not spare any expense when getting items to make your windows safer. Your child’s life is at stake.

Toy Chests
One would never think that something so seemingly harmless could pose so much threat to a baby, but lids on toy chests, especially older ones with regular hinges, could snap shut and catch your baby’s fingers. To avoid grievous injury, either use a toy chestwithout the lid or purchase one with a spring-loaded lid – most modern toy chests now come with the spring-loaded lid for this very reason. A safe playtime is a happy playtime.

 

Sockets and Wiring
The risk of electrocution is probably one of the most serious hazards in the nursery, so you need to take decisive steps to protect the safety of your baby. Contrary to some belief, modern sockets actually have automatic shutters to prevent children from sticking their fingers into sockets. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents and the Child Accident Prevention Trust both indicate that socket covers aren’t necessary in the nursery. Socket covers do prevent children from accidentally plugging in appliances that could electrocute them, such as a hairdryer, but most people wouldn’t let their baby play with hairdryers, or even let them near one. The most important electrical hazard to avoid is frayed wires – carefully inspect all of them on a regular basis. Position them away from heat sources and anywhere that your child can easily reach. To prevent injury or death from fires that start because of faulty wiring, install a smoke detector in each floor of your home.

Changing Tables
The changing table is another piece of furniture where disaster can strike. Never, ever leave your child unsupervised on the changing table, and make sure your baby is securely fastened to the changing table with the safety strap. Kids can always wiggle out of the safety strap, so your child should never leave your sight while on the table. Store the baby powder, changing wipes and lotion out of your baby’s reach. In mere seconds, your baby can get hold of these potentially poisonous materials.

Other decorating tips
Paint: Houses before 1970 have the potential to have lead paint on the walls – this is especially harmful if the paint is peeling. Most modern homes do not use lead paint, but you want to be absolute sure that you use water-based paint free of volatile organic compounds (such as lead).
Other furniture: Pressed wood and particle board can contain formaldehyde, which can cause severe respiratory problems in infants. Opt for furniture that uses natural wood.
Floors: Rugs that are made of natural fibers, such as cotton, rather than synthetic fibers use less volatile organic compounds that could harm your baby.

There’s so much to remember when it comes to making your nursery safe for your baby, but it’s very important that you do your due diligence when you purchase furniture and décor, and make sure that they adhere to Federal safety standards and your own standards. You never want to gamble with the safety of your infant.


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