Safety Issues That Parents Don’t Always Think About

It’s amazing how much time we can spend on securing our homes with alarms and baby proofing devices to keep them out of cupboards and from drawers, but there are other areas of safety that may not even occur to us until after something happens. Since we’d like to avoid the something happening possibility – here are some suggestions for maintaining safety both in and out of the home.

Do Not Let Your Toddler Play Outside Alone

This one seems like a no-brainer, but even if your toddler is asleep in their stroller, don’t dart into the house without them for a couple of seconds. It’s amazing how much mischief a little one can get into when they wake up. I’ve seen toddlers wake up, unbuckle and be out of their strollers in three seconds flat before. It’s pretty scary to think about when you consider all the possibilities. And even if they can’t get out of their straps, toddlers may try to stand up or twist around in their stroller – umbrella strollers aren’t the most stable and you don’t want to come back to finding them face down against the concrete or worse — grass with ants in it. I’ve seen this happen.

Identify and Remove Hazardous Plants in Your Yard

Outdoor play is great for kids, but become aware of what hazardous plants look like. Toddlers put just about everything in their mouth and it only takes contact with poison oak, sumac or ivy to cause a pretty retched rash and experience for your little one.

Driveway Vigilance

Toddlers are mini-pedestrians. More accidents with vehicles happen when a toddler is playing in the driveway and someone backs out, striking the child or worse – runs them over. Be sure to always inspect the driveway and walk around your car before getting in and starting it up. I’d suggest looking under the car as well, I do this as a matter of course to make sure that some of the neighborhood rabbits haven’t taken up residence, but it’s also important to make sure that your toddler or someone else’s isn’t parked under there.

Mowing the Lawn? Your Child Should be Inside

Lawn mowers kick up debris including rocks, hard dirt clumps and bits of wood clutter that can be snapped into several dangerous projectiles. Your toddler is at the right height to take a lot of that in the face. As an adult, I’ve gotten hit with rocks from the mower and they hurt – safety around the home means the baby or toddler is inside while you are mowing. I’ve seen some parents who put their little ones into backpack carriers when they are mowing – other than a profound backache for you, that might be the safest place for them if they need to be outside – just be aware of bees, mosquitos and other stinging insects as well as sun safety and overheating because their little bodies are not as capable as ours of heat regulation.

Have a Deck or a Balcony?

Inspect the railings regularly for stability. Add some mesh or safety railing on the inside of the slates to make sure your child cannot get their head or other body part stuck in between the rails. Also, this should prevent your little one from squeezing through and falling – sometimes from a dangerous height.

Most of these may seem obvious, but it only takes overlooking one to have to cope with serious injury where your toddler is concerned. Being a parent is about being ever vigilant – so take the time to take precautions and enjoy playtime indoors and out – safely.

Related Articles:

Walking – Safety in the Home

Childproofing Tips for Your Home

Toddler Safety & Your Peace of Mind

The Dangerous Shopping Cart

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About Heather Long

Heather Long is 35 years old and currently lives in Wylie, Texas. She has been a freelance writer for six years. Her husband and she met while working together at America Online over ten years ago. They have a beautiful daughter who just turned five years old. She is learning to read and preparing for kindergarten in the fall. An author of more than 300 articles and 500+ web copy pieces, Heather has also written three books as a ghostwriter. Empty Canoe Publishing accepted a novel of her own. A former horse breeder, Heather used to get most of her exercise outside. In late 2004, early 2005 Heather started studying fitness full time in order to get herself back into shape. Heather worked with a personal trainer for six months and works out regularly. She enjoys shaking up her routine and checking out new exercises. Her current favorites are the treadmill (she walks up to 90 minutes daily) and doing yoga for stretching. She also performs strength training two to three times a week. Her goals include performing in a marathon such as the Walk for Breast Cancer Awareness or Team in Training for Lymphoma research. She enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience through the fitness and marriage blogs.