7 Tips to Child-Proof Your Home

Every year, toddlers and young children are injured due to accidents in and around the home. It’s almost impossible to keep an eye on your child at all times, and children explore whatever space they’re in. You may want to think about the potential hazards they could find. The good news (and there’s no bad news): fixing common problem areas is easy and relatively cheap. Here are 7 tips to help you child-proof your home: 1. Use safety latches and locks for cabinets. safety latches and locks for cabinets Cabinets may have fragile glass objects, sharp metal blades, or dangerous chemicals. Having locks or safety latches on your cabinets will help keep them out of your child’s hands even if you’re not watching. 2. Use door knob covers and door locks. door knob covers and door locks You may have rooms with dangerous or heavy equipment. Sometimes it’s just easier to lock these rooms instead of finding ways to conceal all of those items. 3. Use corner and edge bumpers. corner and edge bumpers Some homes have a lot of sharp edges and corners, on furniture and countertops. Having soft bumpers in place will help prevent injuries if your child happens to fall on one of them. 4. Use outlet covers and outlet plates. outlet covers and outlet plates Wall sockets are small but dangerous. About 100 children die every year by electrocution. Your child may have wet hands, a small metal object, and curiosity; exposed electrical outlets are not something to add into the mix. 5. Use safety gates. safety gates Not only do these keep children out of rooms with hazards, they also keep them from falling down stairs and steps. 6. Use window guards and safety netting. window guards and safety netting Whether you’re on a first floor or upper level, falling out of a window or through a seemingly solid screen is dangerous for a small child. Install these safety features to prevent falls not just from windows, but also from landings, balconies and decks. 7. Use anchors for heavy furniture and appliances. anchors for heavy furniture and appliances Children tend to lean on and climb things. Using wall anchors can help keep heavy items like televisions and book cases from falling on them. Living in earthquake country, furniture straps can help keep heavy items secure when things start shaking. Providing a safer environment for your child is one of the many responsibilities you have as a parent, and a bit of focused effort can go a long way.

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Peter Kim, MD

Dr. Kim,  is the Medical Director of Family Care Centers, Former Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at Hoag Hospital, and a recipient of the Physicians of Excellence award from the Orange County Medical Association. He is Board Certified in Family Medicine, and has been practicing in our community for over 20 years. He is an excellent, caring, and well­qualified physician who is dedicated to providing you with superior health care. A native of Los Angeles, he graduated from UCLA and received his medical training at the LAC­USC Medical Center. After completing his residency in Family Medicine, he accepted a sports medicine fellowship at San Jose Medical Center, an affiliate of Stanford University. He enjoys working with patients and families who are training or want to get back into an active lifestyle. Review Dr. Kim on: Facebook Google+ Yelp WebMD