Keeping Your Baby Safe

Recognize These Household Hazards to Reduce the Risk of Injury

Each year, more children die in home accidents than from all childhood diseases combined. These tips will help you protect your baby from avoidable injuries at home:

Always check bath water temperature with your wrist or elbow before bathing your baby.

Use toilet lid locks to prevent children from falling in and drowning in the bowl.

Make sure diapering accessories are out of your baby’s reach. Use a tamperproof diaper pail.

Don’t place your baby on any surface next to an open window – each year approximately 70 U.S. children die from falls from windows.

Put plants, cleaning supplies, medicines, hot drinks and any possible choking hazard out of children’s reach.

Keep your baby away from blinds or drapery cords.

Install baby-proof plugs in electrical outlets and keep your baby away from electrical cords.

Dispose of plastic bags to protect your baby from suffocation.

Check for unsafe toys – avoid ones that have lead paint, sharp edges, brittle plastic parts, strings or chains.

Get down on your hands and knees and survey each room for hazards from your baby’s perspective before he or she begins crawling, standing and walking.

Because old cribs may not meet today’s safety standards, make sure the space between the slats on your baby’s crib is no more than 2-3/8 inches (the width of a 12-oz. drink can).

Make sure your baby can’t pull over shelves and bookcases.

Keep soft quilts, sheepskins and pillows out of your baby’s crib and play area. Soft bedding can lead to suffocation.

Get rid of baby walkers. As many as 20,000 injuries per year are directly attributed to walker accidents.

Install safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs. At the top of stairs, mount safety gates into the wall because a toddler’s weight is enough to push over a "pressure-mounted" gate.

Safety Resources

CDC Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program – Offers a fact sheet for parents.

EPA’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline – Annual drinking water quality reports for many communities are available online.

Poison Control Center National Hotline –800-222-1222 – If you have a poisoning emergency, call this toll-free number to be routed to a regional center for poison control and prevention. You can also order educational materials from this service.

Toy Safety Hotline Offers up-to-date information on toy safety.