Jan 212013
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Making Your House Safe For Toddlers

Toddler-Proofing With Munchkin Safety Items

One thing I wanted to do before we get started on all the Make This House a Home projects was to spend some time toddler-proofing our home.  This is a constantly-evolving task as your children grow older and develop new skills – and new curiosities!  You’ll need to think of each area of the house and what temptations it may hold.  Here are some suggestions to get you started!

10 Tips For Toddler-Proofing

  1. Outlet plug covers are a must.  Outlets – and the things that plug into them – seem to be fascinating for children.  Look behind furniture, under tables, etc.  Because your kids will!
  2. While plugging your outlet covers also take a moment to wrap up any long cords.  Not only could your items be damaged but kids could pull lamps or the television down on top of themselves.
  3. Be thoughtful when working in the kitchen.  Use the back burners when possible and turn pot and pan handles in where little hands can’t see or reach them.  Don’t leave anything on the edges of the countertops.  Kids can reach further than you think!  And if your little one wanders into the kitchen while you’re cooking, be thinking about if what you’re cooking can splash or splatter.  If they’re interested in what you’re doing, put them in their high chair a safe distance away so they can watch.
  4. Also in the kitchen start thinking about appliance doors.  Has your child developed enough strength to open the oven/refrigerator/dish washer door?  If so appliance latches can keep your kids at bay while still allowing you fast and easy access to each item.
  5. Secure shelving like bookcases, leaning shelves, entertainment centers, etc. to the wall so that kids aren’t able to rock items off the shelves or even pull the shelves down on top of themselves.
  6. Where do you keep your medications?  That includes things like OTC pain killers, cold medicine, and even vitamins which can be too much for little systems to handle.  Store them in childproof bottles when possible and keep them up high like in a medicine cabinet.  If you have a climber you may need to think of creative places to store them (like the top shelf in a closet).
  7. And where do you store your cleaning supplies?  Keeping them in an out-of-reach and out-of-sight location is best, but if you do choose to use the space under the kitchen or bath cabinets, you will probably want to add some safety latches.
  8. Shorten the cords on your blinds and other window treatments.
  9. Keep all external doors locked so your little one doesn’t have the chance to wander off.
  10. For internal doors, if any of them tend to swing shut on their own, are especially heavy, or may accidentally lock closed if your child shuts it then use door cushions that create a gap between the door and frame so fingers can’t be pinched and doors can’t be closed.

Using Munchkin Safety Products to Toddler-Proof

Childproofing is a serious topic but the actual work doesn’t have to be 100% serious.  When we recently installed our Munchkin safety items I didn’t tell anyone I was working on it.  Seeing adults trying to figure out how to open to refrigerator and drawers without explaining the latch system is kind of funny!  A little “child-proof spoof” if you will.  My husband got me, too, though; he installed the locking plug covers and stood by chuckling as I tried to pry one from the wall to plug in the vacuum!

What are your tips for toddler-proofing?  Have you ever had a laugh over trying to get into a child-safety item?

I received one or more of the above products for review. No other compensation was received.

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About Liza

Liza is a mom (5-year-old daughter, 20-year-old stepson, and 24-year-old stepdaughter) and wife living in Louisville. She loves spending time with her family, visiting the local zoo and parks, as well as planning travel adventures. Cooking and baking, DIY projects and crafts, and coffee - lots and lots of coffee - round out some of her other hobbies.

  17 Responses to “10 Tips For Toddler-Proofing Your Home”

  1. Such great tips. When we had our second child it was like we were new parents as our first did not touch anything and our second was into everything so we used every child proofing product out there!

  2. I am definitely bookmarking this. My son has finally graduated from infant to toddler and he’s in to -everything-

  3. These are great tips! I like all of our child safety products, but they have a cabinet lock in the church nursery and it took a long time before I figured that thing out! ha! Also, Baby D was taking those outlet covers out by 12 months…one time I saw him with three outlet covers in his hand. It was time to teach him not to stick anything in them!! ahhh….

    • I would be a little freaked if Bubbles started pulling the outlet plugs out! That’s one reason we went with those double-lock kind. I remember a friend of mine’s little sibling sticking a knife in an outlet when we were kids. Fortunately it had a wooden handle on it so he didn’t get shocked by it, but it did scorch the wall!! I’ve been a little paranoid ever since.

  4. I love the Munchkin brand they are the best when it comes to baby proofing the house :)

  5. #3 frightens the hell out of me. I went to school with three different girls who had terrible scarring. Know what from? All three of them dumped boiling water on themselves as toddlers! Isn’t that just crazy? I’ve always moved the handles to the back… ALWAYS.

    • I know what you mean, Shary! Bubbles loves to cook with me in the kitchen and she knows to stay away from the stove, but she’s also very curious. It’s definitely something you have to be vigilant about! That is a little crazy that three girls all had done the same thing! I guess (thankfully!) we’ve come a long way on safety since then.

  6. When my sister child proofed her home, I had a heck of a time opening the cabinet she stores her cleaning supplies in…so I know what you mean!

  7. I need to do some more baby proofing around my house. My son gets into everything.

  8. After 5 kids you would think our home would be beyond childproof. Our biggest nuisance ever was when our oldest was a toddler. She would not stay out of the toilet so we used one of those toilet locks. It was crazy trying to get that thing off when you really needed to go to the bathroom..

    • Oh my, Staci! I can only imagine trying to fiddle with one of those toilet locks when you have to go! Especially after having a baby (or 5, in your case!); I know my bladder has never quite been the same.

  9. We do a lot of the same things you mentioned here. We have had all the outlets covered since before he was born, and we put medicine away so he cannot find it. I need to secure his dresser to the wall (it’s horrible that I haven’t done that yet and he’s 2!).

    I don’t decorate with anything glass, porcelain, or any other fragile material that’s within his reach (tabletops, counters, etc). I can just see it in sharp pieces on the floor minutes after he got his hands on it!

  10. Great tips – I had such a tough time proofing the house with my toddler. Urgh…

  11. My son doesn’t get in to things, he knows that certain things are off limits. We did anchor the heavy furniture to the walls and put breakables high out of reach. I never bothered with the latches on cabinets. We have a rule that there is no playing in the kitchen if the stovetop or oven is turned on – my son knows that he can’t come on the “oven side of the island” if we’re cooking.

  12. So much to think about and prepare! It’s hard to remember about the outlets, for me.

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