It’s almost summer, and for many of you that means entertaining overnight guests. While these visits are generally enjoyable, they do require many preparations in advance of the actual arrival: readying rooms, collecting extra linens, making menus, shopping for groceries, scheduling events and activities, and the like. A long list, yes, but even longer if some of your guests are young children, and your home has not been childproofed recently.
Although child supervision and safety is primarily the responsibility of the parents, keep in mind that household injuries are one of the top reasons children under age 3 visit the emergency room and do whatever you can to prevent an accident in your home..
Common sense dictates that you remove all fragile and sharp objects out of a child’s reach and that you do the same with any household product or medicine that could be toxic, but safety experts strongly suggest that you look at the home from a child’s perspective (on your hands and knees, if possible) to detect any less obvious health hazard.
Many inexpensive and relatively easy to install child-protection devices are available in hardware and children’s stores or online and include such items as:
- Plastic electrical outlet covers
- Safety latches and locks for drawers and cabinets, especially in the kitchen and bathroom
- Safety gates at tops and bottoms of stairs
- Door knob covers and door locks
- Window guards and safety netting
- Corner an edge bumpers
Less obvious precautions may well require that you:
- Keep purses and bags off the floor
- Turn handles of pots on stove so that they face the back
- Tie up window covering cords so that they are out of reach of children
- Remove tablecloths and coverings that toddlers may try to pull themselves up on.
- Frequently scan floor for potentially dangerous dropped items
- Remove any plants that could be toxic if ingested
- Keep the number for the National Poison Control Center – (800) 222-1222 in the United States – and your local emergency numbers close to every phone.
Visit Totsafe.com for a comprehensive child safety checklist and consult it regularly to insure a happy and safe summer visit with children.
Courtesy of Greenville NC Realtor Liz Freeman.