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December 12, 2023

Grandparents’ Guide to Baby Proofing Before the Holidays

As grandparents, nothing brings us as much joy as spending time with our grandchildren. And with the holidays just around the corner, we know many of us are eagerly anticipating family gatherings and creating memories with the youngest members of our family. However, we also know that as much as we may want to spoil them with hugs and gifts, our first priority is keeping them safe. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you baby-proof your home before the holidays.

Mom lying on the floor with her baby on top

Start from the Ground Up

Babies are natural explorers; they love nothing more than crawling around and discovering the world around them. However, this can also put them in harm’s way if they come across sharp corners or loose wires. One of the first steps to baby-proofing is to get down low and assess the area from a baby’s perspective. Consider covering any sharp edges or corners with foam padding, and securing loose wires out of reach using zip-ties or cable clips.

Lock it Up

One of the easiest ways to baby-proof is to install locks and latches on cabinets, drawers, and doors. Babies are curious and love to open anything they can get their hands on, but this can be dangerous if they can access chemicals, medicines, or sharp objects. By locking these areas, you’re giving yourself peace of mind that your home is safe for your little ones to explore.

Air purifier in a living room with 2 babies

Tidy Up

We all love our homes to look cozy and welcoming, but sometimes clutter can pose a hazard to babies. Loose items like candles, vases, and small decorative objects can easily be knocked over or swallowed by curious little ones. Make sure to tidy up any loose items, and if you have any breakables within reach, consider moving them to a higher shelf out of reach.

Baby climbing a baby gate

Double-check the Basics

While baby-proofing can seem overwhelming, it’s important to remember the basics, such as checking smoke detectors and installing baby gates. Make sure that your smoke detectors are in working order, especially if you plan to use candles or other decorative lighting during the holidays. Additionally, make sure to install baby gates at the top and bottom of stairs to prevent your little ones from taking a tumble.

Ask for Help

Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help when baby-proofing. For example, you may want to borrow a baby gate from a friend or family member if you don’t have one, or you may want to enlist the help of a handyman or professional to install locks and latches. Remember, there’s no shame in asking for help – your priority is keeping your grandchild safe, and sometimes that means reaching out to others.

Baby lying on a play mat next to a Christmas tree

Tips for Baby Proofing

Here are a few additional tips that can make the baby-proofing process easier and more thorough:

  1. Furniture Anchors: Children can easily tip over unanchored furniture while trying to climb. Consider securing heavy furniture like bookcases and TVs to the wall to prevent accidents.
  2. Non-Slip Mats: Place non-slip mats under rugs and in bathrooms to prevent children from slipping and falling.
  3. Cover Electrical Outlets: Use safety plugs or outlet covers to protect babies from electrical shock.
  4. Safe Toys: Make sure all toys are age-appropriate and do not contain small parts that could be a choking hazard.
  5. Window Guards: Install window guards or stops to prevent children from falling out.
  6. Cordless Blinds: Replace blinds with looped cords with cordless or motorized versions to eliminate a potential strangulation hazard.
  7. Poisonous Plants: Make sure no poisonous plants are within a child’s reach, either inside or outside the home.
  8. Put Away Pet Supplies: It’s essential to store pet supplies, including bowls, toys, and especially medication, out of baby’s reach. Ensure that these items are securely stored in a high, closed cabinet to keep your grandchild safe.
  9. Shut Doors: Always remember to close the doors to rooms with potential hazards, such as the laundry room, bathroom, or any room with heavy equipment or delicate objects. For added security, consider installing door knob covers to prevent little explorers from opening doors they shouldn’t.

As grandparents, we know that our grandkids are the most important thing in the world. And while baby-proofing may seem intimidating, it’s an essential part of keeping them safe during the holidays. By taking these steps to baby-proof your home, you’re creating a safe and welcoming environment for your little ones to explore and create memories in. So go ahead and cuddle, spoil, and love your grandkids – and rest assured that you’ve taken the necessary steps to keep them safe.

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