The following is part 1 of 2 of a guest post from our friends at GoNannies.com. This post was originally published on the GoNannies.com Blog.
Many parents believe they are doing all they can to keep their kids safe, but with safety recommendations and standards always changing, it can be hard to keep up with what’s safe and what’s not. Here we’ve gathered 100 of the most important safety rules parents should follow to keep their kids safe and out of danger’s path.
In the House
While there’s no replacement for supervision, there are things you can do to decrease the number of risks that contribute to accidents and injuries in your home. Follow these rules to increase your child’s safety while at home.
1. Signup for recall alerts. Stay up-to-date on child-related product recalls by subscribing to the Consumer Product Safety Commission recall alerts.
2. Turn the water temperature down to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Hot water can scald children. By turning the water temperature thermostat down you can prevent scalds and burns.
3. Store medications properly. Store medications out of reach and sight to prevent accidental ingestions.
4. Use the right safety gates. While pressure mounted gates may work fine to keep kids confined to a room, they have no place at the top of stairs.
5. Safety proof windows. Children needlessly fall out of windows each year. Be sure to add window guards or locks to your windows to be sure your child isn’t one of them.
6. Choose appropriate toys. Choose age-appropriate toys to reduce the risk of injury to your child.
7. Opt for a pet that is good with kids. When considering a family pet, you’ll want to be sure to select a pet whose temperament makes it kid-friendly.
8. Clean toys without harsh chemicals. Clean children’s toys naturally to prevent the spread of germs and decrease risks associated with toxic cleaners.
9. Store cleaners away from kids. Store toxic chemicals and cleaners out of the reach and sight of children to prevent accidental poisoning and chemical burns.
10. Be sure smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are functioning properly. The proper placement of working carbon monoxide and smoke detectors can alert family members of a fire and prevent children from experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning.
Children spend a large part of their day unsupervised in their rooms sleeping. Ensure your child has a safe sleep space by following these important safety rules.
11. Put babies back to sleep. Since the 1994 Back to Sleep campaign was launched, the incidence of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome has been slashed in half.
12. Don’t use an infant seat for routine sleep at home. The safest place for a baby to sleep is on his back in a safe sleep space that includes a firm mattress.
13. Create a safe sleep space. It can be tempting to fall asleep with your baby on the couch, but you shouldn’t. Doing so poses a suffocation risk to your baby.
14. Share a room at first. The first six months of his life you should keep your baby in your room, in a close but separate sleep area next to your bed.
15. Avoid co-sleeping. Avoid suffocation and strangulation by providing a safe and separate sleep space for your baby.
16. Position cribs away from windows. Keep your child’s crib away from windows to reduce the risk of falls and strangulation or entrapment in window blind cords and window coverings.
17. Use bed rails. You can keep toddlers and young children from falling out of bed by using the appropriate bed rails.
18. Opt for sleep sacks over blankets. Prevent the risk of suffocation by using sleep sacks instead of loose blankets.
19. Keep the thermostat set between 68-70 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping your child’s room a comfortable temperature can improve sleep and decrease the risk of SIDS.
20. Don’t use drop side cribs. Since 2011, drop side cribs have been banned from the United States because they simply aren’t structurally sound.
In the Car
All parents know not to text or talk on the phone while driving, but do you know these other rules that can help increase your child’s safety and well-being while in the car? In addition to keeping the car free from loose objects that can become missiles in a crash, here are 10 other safety rules to follow.
21. Use the right car seat. Be sure your child is in the right car seat for his weight and height and that the seat fits properly in your car.
22. Have your car seat installation inspected. The majority of car seats are installed wrong. Be sure yours isn’t one of them.
23. Use the seat properly each time. When you’re in a rush it can be tempting not to pull the harness tight enough or to skip the car seat all together. Don’t. Doing so could be a death sentence.
24. Don’t allow jackets in car seats. Bulky coats and car seats are a dangerous combination.
25. Know the seat belt fit test. Before moving your child to a seatbelt only, be sure he passes the test.
26. Don’t offer food during car trips. The safest way for children to eat is to eat while doing nothing else. Monitoring a child who is eating in the back seat is impossible.
27. Know your vehicle’s blind spots. It’s essential to know where your blind spots are so you don’t accidentally run over a small child or object.
28. Don’t use aftermarket car seat accessories. Popular aftermarket products can compromise the integrity of the seat, decreasing your child’s protection.
29. Don’t buy used car seats. If a car seat was in an accident it shouldn’t be used. When buying secondhand, there’s no way to know if a car seat was in an accident or not.
30. Check your car seat’s expiration date. Car seats expire. After their date of expiration, the materials may be compromised.
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