Becoming a parent surely is one of the absolute highlights of the human experience. Your world starts revolving around your newly-formed family and the happiness that you feel during this time of your life is immense.
Having this in mind, you certainly wouldn’t do anything to compromise this situation, so one of the main things to think about is the security and well-being of your newborn. Keeping your baby safe is a challenging job, no doubt about it.
There are many different child safety hazards, and most parents tend to overlook some potentially dangerous situations. Inside or outside of your home, you can never be too cautious. I am not trying to make you paranoid or fearful, just more aware of these harmful possibilities.
Don’t get too stressed about this; I assure you that peace of mind is possible and that your parenting ‘career’ will be even more joyful by taking care of the following hazards.
Here are a few potential dangers that you’ll face during the growth of your baby and simple, yet effective solutions for them.
1. Choking and suffocation
Many parents will put this hazard as one of the first that come to mind when the baby comes, so we simply had to address it. There are many occasions where your child can start choking, and many young moms are on alert from the day one. The small objects, feeding, sleeping, all can potentially interrupt the infant’s breathing and create an unpleasant situation.
If possible, avoid any toys that might have small parts that can be detachable, or possible to get ripped out by the child. We’re talking eyes, buttons, gears, wheels, and screws.
While feeding, try to be extra careful and put small portions into baby’s mouth. Provide a comfortable feeding position to your child, ideally rocked in a fine nursery glider chair. It will help you during feeding and sleepless nights. Develop a habit of using it, as it will benefit you greatly, especially if you’re breastfeeding.
Sleeping – don’t put your baby to sleep on the stomach. Sudden infant death syndrome might occur if your child sleeps like this. Remember not to sleep with your child, no matter how cautious you think you are. Both the surface of your bed and your possible movements during sleep can harm the baby.
2. Homes of friends who don’t have children
Being a new parent doesn’t mean that you are not going to socialize or visit your friends anymore. The chances are that some of your single or even married friends don’t have kids; you should know that their homes aren’t as baby-proof as yours. This means that your toddler’s safety might be compromised if you let them roam freely around this new environment.
So, what can you do to keep the baby secure so you can enjoy a chat and a cup of coffee with your friend carefree?
Besides keeping your child near you all the time, the best solution is to set up a play yard because this will limit your baby’s moving space. To keep them entertained, throw in their favorite toys and some snacks in there. You can buy a foldable play yard and bring it along with you, or just leave it at your friend’s place if you visit there often.
3. Crowded places
Busy places like malls are always full of attractions and interesting stuff your toddler will most certainly like to explore. When they learn to walk, children enjoy discovering things; this is where they can get in trouble, injured, or lost. You don’t want to go through the stress having a lost child wandering the mall.
To handle this situation without going bonkers, you can make small cards with information about the toddler yourself, and your cell phone number. Attach this card to the child’s clothing at a visible place, so if it gets lost anyone can contact you.
Some moms go a step further and use harnesses which can draw some unwanted looks and judgment, but it is ok. Children can be quite active and full of energy so maintaining the constant supervision is sometimes hard. Opinions on this option are divided, and you can use it on your terms – if you think it’s good, use it. If not, don’t. Simple as that.
For safe drives with your toddler, installing a baby car seat is a must. The problem happens when people set up the seat front-facing, which means turned towards the windshield. Why is this a mistake?
Well, everyone should be aware that the small child’s spine and ligaments are still developing, and their heads are still large in proportion to their bodies which makes their stability low. A solution which can provide suitable support is to put the seat rear-facing.
In a case of a car accident, research has shown that setting up the seat this way will reduce the chance of injuries up to five times, for children of two years or younger. Even when your kids grow older than two, it is still a good idea to keep them facing the back seat. Make sure that you learn more about car seat safety, and drive with a cool head afterward.
One of the big problems in this area arises when the child learns to unbuckle the harness by itself. During this stage, you need to teach the child the basics of safety by either adding reward system or putting some educational cartoons for the child’s attention.
Did you know that infants can drown in the water two-inch deep? A lot of cases of drowning were reported in the past years, with not caring as the main reason for this horrific fact.
To avoid this, manufacturers came up with the idea to build and sell infant bath seats, which can help in the process, keeping the baby secured and unable to move. Unfortunately, these proved to be not so reliable, as the suction cups on the bottom tend to detach, trapping the baby underwater.
The simplest solution is – never to leave your baby unattended, especially during bath time. The most common scenario that happens is that parent forgets something necessary for the baby’s bath time and thinks “I’ll just run to get that quick, nothing’s going to happen.”
Don’t do this. Be prepared in advance to prevent this scenario from happening. Have everything necessary for the baby bath near and ready before you start.
Don’t forget to babyproof your tub with a rubber mat. When your infant is old enough to stand, never allow her to stand in the tub.
Having a toddler can be stressful sometimes, yet it brings the biggest joy in a lifetime. We can never be too safe, but on the other hand, if we take care enough, our lives can be pretty great.