Being a parent is a challenging job. A big part of being a parent means having to worry about doing everything in your power to keep your child safe. Parents often talk about baby-proofing the living room or the kitchen, but it is also very important to make your bathroom a safer place for your kids. We compiled a list of safety tips to help you make your bathroom a less dangerous place.
Never leave a small child alone in a bathroom
We can often overestimate children’s understanding of the world around them. They might get curious and look around. The could often try to imitate your behavior in the bathroom without understanding the meaning behind it.
Since it is difficult to follow your kid’s every step, you can make the bathroom unavailable by installing a hook-and-eye lock high on the outside of the door and lock the door whenever you leave the bathroom.
Lock up all cabinets
Lock up all of your cabinets, especially the ones where you keep your medications or first-aid supplies. This is the easiest way to keep yourself from worrying about your children climbing on the counters and reaching for something that’s not safe for them. Check out cabinet locks here:
Install a toilet lock
Install a toilet lock to prevent your child from lifting the lid. Children can be very curious about what’s in the toilet, bend over the toilet, easily lose their balance and fall in headfirst, which might end up in drowning.
Secure all of the cleaning supplies
Move all of your cleaning supplies on high shelves or lock them up somewhere else in the house. Many cleaning products contain different toxins that are dangerous and could cause poisoning or death. Since these products usually come in colorful packaging, they can look like a bottle of juice to children, making them compelled to drink them.
Make sure that bathroom floors are dry
Make sure you leave your floors dry after taking a shower, since bathroom floors can be very slippery, and, therefore, a falling hazard for your children. Another thing you can do is placemats on your bathroom floor and prevent slipping once and for all.
Install anti-slip stickers in bathtub or shower
Bathtubs and showers can get very slippery when wet. To prevent your child from slipping and falling, you can install anti-slippery stickers. Another option is to purchase showering slippers for your child with textured soles. Although the easiest is probably to buy a non-slip bath and shower mat for babies. They are made with suction cups that keep the mat in place while the surface has texture to prevent them from slipping.
Keep sharp objects out of reach
Don’t leave razors, scissors or other sharp objects on the counter. Even though counters may be too high for your children. Kids can climb on the bathtub or the toilet and reach anything they want.
Don’t leave electrical appliances out
Do not leave electrical appliances (like curlers, flat irons, hair dryers) plugged in on the counter. Children can burn themselves on hot curlers or irons. Unplug these appliances after every use, since they can fall into the toilet or a filled bathtub and cause electric shock to the person that is in direct contact.
Protect electric outlets near showers/sinks
Make sure all electric outlets near the shower/bath or sink are protected by a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI). The GFCI was designed to protect people from electrical shock. This device shuts off electric power when it detects that the current is flowing along an unplanned path (water or a person). Here is a guide on how to safely install a GFCI outlet.
Install lockers on trash bins
Install trashcans locks or buy garbage cans that come with a lock. Children can get in contact with disposable razors and cut themselves. Also, they can find harmful toxic products that have been tossed into the trash. If you have in-shower shaving mirror, it’s especially important to remove it or keep it out of reach while kids are in the tub. The mirror can break or the sharp edges can cut them and the razor itself is particularly dangerous.
Keep mouthwash out of reach
Make sure that the mouthwash is out of reach, since children may copy your behavior and do not necessarily understand that the mouthwash is meant to spit out, not swallowed. The color itself and the plastic bottle make it look very similar to an energy drink or soda and kids are not able to tell the difference. The alcohol content in stronger mouth antiseptic washes can be dangerous for children if ingested. The recent “Tide-pod challenge” and the results that have occurred because of this silly prank is another example of where household items can really pose a threat to children.
Adjust your hot water system or install anti-scalding devices
Set your hot water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit or less- and no higher. This will reduce the chance of scalding. The other option is to install an anti-scalding device on your faucets, which will automatically turn off the water if the temperature gets too high. You can find different anti-scalding devices on this link: www.plumbingsupply.com/scald.html
Purchase a rubber guard for tub spouts
Tub spouts are usually not something you’d consider a hazard, but anyone who has ever given their child a bath knows they can get very excited while playing in the tub. Install a spout cover to prevent your child from accidentally hitting or cutting their head on the spout.
Install grab bars in your tub
Although normally thought of as devices for elderly or disabled, these also can be useful for kids, especially when they transition from baths to showers. These can be helpful in many ways. If your child is struggling to get up in the bath or slipping when getting in, grab bars can help him/her get more comfortable with the bathing process.
Install safety glass doors
This is a solution to a big cutting hazard for children and grown-ups alike. When you are standing on a slippery floor and using shower gels and creams, you are constantly in danger of slipping, breaking the glass and cutting yourself.
Install rubber bumpers on sharp counter corners
Counters usually have sharp corners, which is not a problem until you have children who run around and fall every 5 minutes. Install rubber bumpers to make sure they don’t hit and cut their head on these sharp corners.
As you can see, there are lots of ways to make your bathroom a safer place for your kids. The list above covers many different ways to fight scalding, slipping, cutting and electrocution hazards. Try making some changes listed above and stop worrying about your child’s safety in the bathroom!