18 August 2003

Childproof your child's room

Danger Prevention
Child's room
Hot water bottles Burns Always cover hot water bottles to prevent burns and remove them from the bed before your child gets in
Toys Choking and suffocation Don't use toys with small parts
Follow safety warnings and age limit guidelines
Keep older children's toys away from the under-threes
Cot toys should have strings no longer than 20cm
Throw away or repair broken toys and games
Get rid of small pieces of crayon
Don't allow small children to play with beads, buttons, coins, bits of torn plastic or broken balloons
Walking ring Falls Choose a wide wheel base for stability
The seat must be strong and non-detachable
A walking ring that folds must have a locking system to prevent it from accidentally folding or collapsing
The wheels should not lock sideways
Child's weight must not exceed the manufacturers' recommended maximum
Never carry the walking ring with child in
A child that cannot sit up without assistance must not use a walking ring
Use on a flat surface free from electrical cords, etc
Changing mat Falls Make use of a sturdy changing table.
Never leave a child on a high surface.
The table should have shelves or compartments for storing everything you'll need. This prevents you from taking your eyes off your baby while you look for that hard-to-find item.
Cot Strangulation Bars of cots and playpens should be vertical
Gaps between bars should be smaller than 68mm or larger than 70mm so that a baby can't slip its head through the bars and be strangled
Remove ribbons and strings that might get wound around a child's neck.

Remove bulky toys or cushions that the child could stand on and then topple out of the cot.

Bedding Burns Always use flameproof materials for bedding and clothing.
Suffocation Don't use pillows for small babies
Overheating Prevent overheating of infants under one – avoid using duvet's or sleeping bags. Rather use sheets and blankets
Dummies Choking and strangulation Check regularly for holes and tears
Don't affix a dummy to a pram/pushchair or clothes with string or ribbon
Bunk beds Falls Don't allow small children to climb or sleep on bunk beds. The top bed should have railings right around
Pram Falls Always use safety harnesses
Prams should be stable and not tip over easily
Do not overload a pram; avoid hanging shopping bags from handles
Door Fractures and bruising Use doorstoppers at the top of the door to prevent children from closing doors and trapping fingers



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