Tips on Childproofing Your Bathroom
When babies cross the threshold into toddler-hood, the whole house is a danger zone, but the bathroom can be the most dangerous. According to a study from the Center for Injury Research and Policy, about 120 children are admitted to the emergency room every day for bathroom or shower-related injuries. That's 43,000 children every year. Here are 6 tips on making your bathroom safe and child-friendly.
The door is your first guard against danger. Keep the bathroom door closed at all times. While that works to keep baby out of the bathroom for the first few months, prepare for when they get tall enough to reach the doorknob. Arm the exterior doorknob with a safety cover. Baby will be able to turn and spin the cover, but won't be able to open the door.
The bathtub may be the most dangerous area of the bathroom. Before you turn on any faucet, make sure your water heater is set to a low temperature to prevent scalding. 120°F is recommended, but you can turn it down even lower. Always keep an eye on babies near water. Children can drown in very small amounts of water. Make sure you have a nonslip mat inside and outside your tub or shower. Cover the spout with a water spout bumper or cover so baby doesn't knock his or her head during bath time. Shower curtains can be tempting to pull on. Make sure curtains are tucked into the tub when the shower is not being used. If the shower door is glass, make sure it's shatterproof.
Textured floor tiles are best for preventing falls. If it's not an option for you, make sure to have nonslip rugs and mats covering the floors to minimize accidents.
The toilet looks harmless, but it can be a hazard for little ones. Keep the lid to your toilet seat down at all times. Toilet lid locks are an option for an extra measure of safety.
Cabinets and Drawers
Keep a latch or lock on your bathroom cabinet or drawer. Keep the wastebasket and any cleaning solutions or harmful items like medications, cosmetics and shampoos in the locked cabinet and drawers. If the wastebasket doesn't fit into the locked cabinet, opt for a covered model.
Keep all electrical appliances like curling irons, hair dryers and shavers locked in cabinets when they are not in use. Keep electrical outlets covered with safety plug protectors and covers.
We can't be everywhere all the time, and for the times we aren't there, we have to add an extra layer of security to keep baby safe and to keep peace of mind. Even the smallest effort toward prevention could save you a trip to the emergency room.