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Front Page » December 17, 2002 » Local News » Protecting Carbon County children from common househould ...
Published 4,679 days ago

Protecting Carbon County children from common househould dangers

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Common household items such as stoves and window blinds can cause serious problems for children of all ages. To ensure that children are safe in each room of a home, adults should inspect dangerous situations and make them safe for children. During the holiday season, it is extremely important to child proof the home to ensure that the exciting time of year does not turn deadly.

It seems as if every Carbon County home has all sorts of hazards to children however, the holiday season usually brings to the forefront added dangers for youngsters.

According to the National Safety Council, 51,500 deaths occurred in the home or community last year. This is an even larger number than those killed in automobile accidents on a yearly basis. Many of these deaths claim children yet are easily preventable.

Baby proofing the home against hidden danger is one way to help reduce child-related accidents, and the results can be invaluable.

The retail baby goods company, The Right Start, wants to help parents give their babies a safe start by offering tips and gift ideas to make a home toddler-friendly.

Essential things for local parents to remember include the following:

•The bedroom should be comfortable and functional, but many unassuming items can cause harm if left unattended.

Everyone, including babies and toddlers, love looking out windows to see the outside world, but parents should never place the baby's crib or other furniture near window blinds or curtain cords. These items can accidentally get wrapped around the child, possibly causing harm.

Using blind cord wind ups ensures that all cords are kept out of reach of children and furniture, protecting them during sleep or play.

•Always put a baby to sleep on their back or side in a crib with a firm, flat mattress and no soft bedding underneath. This prevents the baby from becoming tangled in sheets and blankets. Using items like stay put crib sheet prevents sheets from slipping off of mattresses during a restless night.

•Meals contain their own set of rules and cautions, but the kitchen itself is one of the most dangerous rooms in the house when considering common obstacles like furniture, cabinets and the stove.

Never leave a child alone in a high chair and always secure them with safety straps. This will prevent the child from leaning too far forward in the chair, causing it to tip.

Aside from food, babies and toddlers love to put things in their mouths. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 900,000 people are exposed to poison every year, and more than half of these cases involve children. That's why adults should always lock household cleaning products, as well as knives, matches and plastic bags away from children.

The easiest way to prevent children from getting into these items is with child proof cabinet locks. These locks install easily inside cabinets and drawers where they will remain unseen.

These mechanisms automatically lock when a drawer or door is closed and only unlock when a magnetic key is placed against the outer surface. This keeps children safe from household items that can cause harm and also prevents little fingers from becoming trapped in closing doors.

•Curious kids also like to discover new sensations including heat. An easy way to prevent curious children from turning on stove burners is with stove knob covers. These covers deter children from turning on the stove, while the hinged lid allows parents convenient access to stove knobs, without removing the covers.

•The living room is where most families spend the majority of their time, but it has its own set of hazards that need to be avoided.

Glass and wood furniture gives a stylish look to any room, but sharp edges and corners can easily cause a toddler harm during a fall.

Protect children from sharp corners and edges by adding toddler guards to your furniture. These thick, non-toxic, flame-retardant and elasticized cushions surround the furniture, offering protection from falls.

•While falling down is not uncommon, some falls can be more serious than others, especially if stairs are involved.

Blocking off stairways and other rooms using the child proof safety gates not only prevents falls, but it stops curious toddlers from exploring rooms that they shouldn't enter.

•Forgetting to put the toilet seat down isn't just an inconvenience, it can also lead to an accident in the bathroom.

Most parents know that they should never leave babies unattended near water, but most parents don't think about the toilet.

Items are on the market which allow adults to lock the toilet seat in the down position. This will help to keep curious little ones safe and prevent expensive plumbing bills by locking the toilet seat in place. The lock even automatically resets when the lid is lowered, making sure that the toilet seat stays down, as long as it's closed.

Keeping children safe is a full-time job, but using safety gear, which can be found at most local stores, takes some of the pressure off of parents and grandparents.

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