If you are expecting a new baby or if you are already a parent, it is extremely important that you take time out of your busy schedule to childproof your home. When it comes to purchasing safety items to make your home child-safe, most parents just think about outlet covers, cabinet and drawer locks. However, there is a lot more that you need to be doing!
Before I get started with giving you my checklist of items that you will need, I first want to remind you to invest in a good infant and child first aid kit and a few up-to-date fire extinguishers. It is always better to prepare ahead of time for an emergency than to have an emergency you are not prepared for.
Childproofing Items Every Home Should Have
Door Alarms - These are great for all doors leading to the outside and for doors that lead to a flight of stairs such as your basement entry door.
Window Guards - These will help to prevent accidental falls out of the windows. All windows that children have access to should have window guards and/or alarms on them.
Safety Gates - You should use safety gates to prevent falls from stairs or to block off entryways to rooms that you don't want your children to wander in to. When it comes to purchasing a gate, always look for updated new models so that you avoid outdated or possibly recalled baby gates.
Toilet Locks - These are pretty inexpensive and can be found in most department stores. You will want to place one on each toilet in your home to prevent accidental drowning's or expensive plumbing costs should your child try flushing something they shouldn't!
Electrical Outlet Covers - These are probably the most common type of safety item that most parents purchase. You can purchase plastic plugs that insert into the outlet or you can buy child-safe outlets that have sliders that slide across the open receptacle.
Hard Surface Corner Covers and Edge Covers - These are soft cushions or covers that you place over hard corners (like the fireplace hearth, corners of coffee tables, end tables, night stands, etc.).
Cabinets, Drawers and Appliance Locks - You can purchase metal or hard plastic locks and latches that easily attach to your cabinets, drawers and appliances. To save money, look for packages that contain multiple locks and latches that are sold in bulk packs as you will need more than one!
Video Camera and Monitors - If you can afford it, every baby's nursery or child's bedroom should have a well-placed video camera or monitor in it. I also like to recommend that as your child gets older that a video camera be placed in the room that they play the most in, such as their playroom.
Before heading out to purchase your supplies, sit down and inspect your home and make a list of every item you think you will need. If you can't afford to buy it all now, purchase the most important things first and then pick up the rest of the items as soon as you can.
Shelly Hill is a mother and grandmother living in Pennsylvania who enjoys writing, blogging, cooking and crafting. You can visit Shelly's Shakin 'N Bakin in the Kitchen blog at http://wahmshelly.blogspot.com/ for free menu ideas, cooking tips and recipes. You can visit Shelly's crafting blog called Passionate About Crafting at http://passionateaboutcrafting.blogspot.com/ for free craft project ideas, crafting tips and several great craft projects geared towards kids.