Welcoming a new child into your family is an exciting event… and it can also be intimidating. Especially when it comes to safety. In order to help you feel more prepared, we’re sharing seven basic safety tips for new parents.
1. Purchase furniture that adheres to federal safety standards.
This doesn’t just apply to your baby’s crib, but the chairs, dressers and any other furniture item in the nursery. You can find these guidelines here. Also ensure that large items are anchored to the wall, and that your changing table has a strap attached to it to help keep your child secure when you’re changing her diaper.
2. Baby-proof all accessible drawers and cabinets.
This is a good idea to do prior to when your baby becomes mobile, just to ensure you have all your bases covered. Invest in protective knobs for your oven and stove, too. And keep all hazardous items on a high shelf, or under lock and key.
3. Be mindful of pet food.
If you have pets, you need to make sure that there isn’t pet food lying around. It can be a choking hazard for a crawling child. So store it in a cabinet and try to have the pet food dishes in a place that isn’t as easily accessible to your baby.
4. Be aware of recalls.
Save the information from all baby-related items you purchase, like strollers, cribs, toys, etc. Make sure to register them when possible, as the companies will notify you of recalls if they apply. Also consider bookmarking the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s recall list to be informed. Click on “babies and kids” for the latest news.
5. Make sure your baby’s car seat is ready to go.
And you know how to install it properly. Hospitals will check to see if you have a car seat before they discharge you, and having it ready to go will help you have one less thing to remember when the big day arrives.
6. Bathroom safety is always a good idea.
Consider purchasing non-slip mats for any hard surface that may get wet. Make sure to test the bath water to see if it’s too hot. To help your peace of mind, you can purchase an anti-scald spout cover for your faucet, like this.
7. Don’t microwave your baby’s formula/breastmilk.
Most microwaves heat unevenly, which creates hot spots in your child’s formula that can burn your baby’s mouth. (Breastmilk shouldn’t be warmed up this way either, because of the heat, and if it gets too hot, it can break down the nutrients it contains.) Warm the bottle by running it under warm tap water, or submerging the bottle in a warm bowl of water. Always test the temperature on your wrist before giving it to your child.
What are some of your favorite basic safety tips for new parents?