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Making Your Home Safe: A Checklist for New Moms at UPMC in South Central Pa.

Having a new child can be stressful and overwhelming. Household items that never used to be a safety concern are now.

28 Safety Tips to Baby-Proof Your Home

Here is a list of safety precautions you can take to keep your baby or toddler safe.

  1. Never leave your infant sleeping alone on a bed or changing table where he or she could fall.
  2. Check the temperature of your baby's room to make sure that it is not too warm.
  3. Keep your baby's sleeping area free of toys, blankets, pillows or other bedding.
  4. Keep small items like buttons, beads, candies or other small items out of reach.
  5. Place plastic garbage and grocery bags in a high shelf out of reach.
  6. Install baby gates at all stairwells.
  7. Cap all wall sockets with safety plugs.
  8. Double check the temperature of your baby's bath water before placing him or her in the water.
  9. Do not hold your baby while cooking.
  10. Anchor furniture to the wall or floor.
  11. Place TVs on sturdy, low bases or make sure they are anchored securely.
  12. Keep TV, cable, and phone cords out of reach.
  13. Make sure that space heaters, radiators, and other appliances are off limits.
  14. Never leave your child unattended in a room that is not baby-proofed.
  15. Purchase a high chair that has a sturdy base and cannot tip over.
  16. Keep sharp objects in child-proof containers.
  17. Install safety locks on all pool areas.
  18. Keep guns locked, unloaded and out of reach.
  19. Do not smoke around your baby.
  20. Keep your baby out of direct sunlight.
  21. Make sure that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working.
  22. Make sure you have a fire extinguisher in your home.
  23. Secure all cabinet doors and drawers with latches.
  24. Place screens or safety rails on fireplaces.
  25. Keep toilet seats down and bathroom doors shut.
  26. Never leave your child unsupervised near any body of water.
  27. Never leave your child alone in your car.
  28. Have a list of emergency numbers near your phone, on your refrigerator, in your car, in your diaper bag, and with anyone who cares for your baby.

Pet Safety Tips

Often, your pet is considered your "first baby." When a baby comes along, it can be confusing to your pet.

Here are a few safety tips to prepare your pet for your new baby.

  • Introduce your baby's scent. Bring a blanket or other item that contains your baby's scent home from the hospital before bringing your new baby home. Introduce it to your pet and see how your pet reacts. Have your pet sniff the blanket or other item from a distance. When you do this, it sends a message to your pet that the blanket or item belongs to you. This helps you start the process of creating respect for your baby. Establish boundaries for the nursery. At first, the nursery should be off-limits to your pet. Train your pet to understand that there is an invisible barrier that should be respected. Once your baby is home, you can allow your pet to explore the new nursery when supervised.
  • Control the introduction of your pet and baby. Make sure that your pet has plenty of exercise on the day that you bring your baby home. Before the introduction, make sure your pet is calm. Your pet will pick up on your energy and the smell of the baby right away. The scent should be familiar to your pet. Allow your pet to sniff from a distance. Until you know how your pet will react, keep your baby at a distance. As your child grows, teach them the importance of being respectful towards your pet.
  • Do not forget your pet. Your pet needs your love and attention too. Be sure to maintain their routine of walks, playtime, and your attention. Maintaining their day-to-day activities will help your pet feel more secure with the new change.

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