Safety: Make Your Home Safe for Your Child

Most injuries to young children happen at home. Check your home often. Look at your home from your child's point of view to see what might be dangerous.

Around 6 months of age, your baby starts to move around a lot more. Look for possible dangers in your house and remove them. As your child grows and can do more things, the dangers will change.

Make your home a safe place to explore.

  • Block the stairswith gates at the top and bottom.
  • Cut cordsfor blinds and curtains short. Remove all drawstrings from clothing. Children can be strangled on these cords.
  • Lock all medicines, vitamins, household cleaners, and other dangerous chemicals in a high cabinet. Keep lighters, matches, sharp objects and electrical appliances out of your child's reach.
  • Attach all bookcases, heavy appliances, and other heavy furniture to the wall.
  • Keep electrical outlets coveredand tie up electrical cords.

Keep your child safe at meal time.

  • Cook on the back burners of your stove. Turn pot handles away from your child.
  • Keep hot liquids and hot foods away from the edge of the table or countertop.
  • Choose a high chair with a safety belt. Use the belt every time your child sits in the chair.

Key Message
Prevention is the most important part of child safety.

Keep your child safe at play.

  • Keep small toys and other small objects away from your baby. He could choke on them.
  • Check the size of your baby's toys.If a toy, or any part of a toy, can fit inside a toilet paper tube, it is too small for your baby to play with before age 3 years. Choose toys that are meant for your child's age.

Keep your child clean and safe.

  • When your child is in or near water, always make sure you are able to touch him by reaching out your hand. If you have to leave the room for any reason, take your baby with you.
  • It is never safe to leave a baby alone in the bath, not even for a few seconds.
  • Keep one hand on your baby at all times when you change her diaper or clothing on a changing table.

Keep your baby safe while sleeping.

  • Always place your baby on his back to sleep, both at night and for naps. Put your baby on his back right from the start.
  • Use only a crib that meets current Canadian safety standards. The crib mattress should fit tightly inside the crib. Use only a fitted sheet. Keep toys and loose bedding out of the crib. Anything extra can increase the risk of injury and suffocation.
  • Have your baby sleep in a crib in your bedroom for the first 6 months.You can sleep in a separate bed or on a mattress beside the crib. It is unsafe to share the same sleep surface as your baby, like a bed, couch or futon. Bed sharing is linked to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and suffocation.

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Organization: Public Health Agency of Canada

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