Some safety hazards apply to all children. But many problems are especially dangerous for children at a particular age or stage of development.
Keep the following precautions in mind for your children as they grow.
Never leave a child alone on a changing table, bed, or sofa. Children can fall as soon as they can roll over.
Use gates on stairways and install window guards on all windows above the first floor as soon as your baby can crawl.
Never leave small objects within your baby's reach.
Put your baby to sleep face up to prevent suffocation and reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
Never carry hot liquids or food, or cook, while holding your child.
Keep pins and other sharp objects off the floor and out of your baby's reach.
Install safety plugs in wall sockets.
Remove easily overturned lamps and dangling electrical cords.
Place soft adhesive bumpers on the corners of sharp-edged furniture.
Place a gate across stairways to keep the baby from falling downstairs.
Keep medicines and poisons in a locked cabinet. Install child locks on cabinets.
Be sure baby furniture and toys are painted with lead-free paint. Buy age-appropriate toys that are too large to swallow.
Never leave your baby alone in the bath; keep one hand on the child at all times.
Secure doors that lead to stairways, driveways, and storage areas.
Never leave a child alone in a bathtub, wading pool, or other body of water.
Lock medicines away immediately after use.
Lock kerosene, pesticides, and toxic cleaning products in a safe place.
Buy age-appropriate toys that are too large to swallow.
Don't leave your child alone around burning fireplaces, heaters, or other hot appliances.
Provide constant supervision.
Store dangerous tools and gardening equipment in a locked shed or cabinet.
Keep matches and cigarette lighters locked up and out of sight.
Teach your child the right way to use simple kitchen tools and appliances.
Teach bicycle safety rules and traffic dangers.
Start swimming lessons. Never leave a child unsupervised around a pool or other body of water, even if the child has had swimming lessons.
Insist that your child wear a helmet when cycling or other appropriate times. Children should wear helmets and wrist and kneepads while skating and skateboarding.
Teach proper use of more complex kitchen appliances.
Be sure your child uses well-fitting, well-maintained sports equipment when practicing or playing a game.
Teach your child basic first-aid and what to do in an emergency.
© 2013 Main Line Health