Any parent will tell you that their child’s life is priceless, and there’s no limit to what they’d do or how much money they’d spend to keep their kid safe. However, the fact remains that whether due to lack of awareness or mistaken belief that they aren’t necessary, many homes lack some easy and affordable safeguards for protecting children. To help you better equip your home, we’ve compiled this list of six inexpensive products that could end up saving your kid’s life:
1. Anti-tip brackets for appliances and furniture – Whether trying to reach the cookies on the top shelf or straining for the TV remote, kids will climb practically anything to get to their desired goal. Unfortunately, many large pieces of furniture and appliances are not steady enough to handle their weight, and they can come crashing down, injuring or even killing the child. A simple and affordable anti-tip bracket or anchor holds large pieces of furniture and appliances in place to avoid such tragedy, and they can be installed with basic tools in just minutes.
2. Baby gates – Don’t let your little one take a tumble down the stairs or wander into a non-kid-friendly area. A baby gate is a simple solution that corrals your kids and keeps them safely under your supervision. Invest in one that installs with hardware rather than tension rods for the most secure setup, and avoid collapsing, accordion style ones to keep little hands and feet from getting pinched.
3. A new kitchen sponge – Havens for germs, kitchen sponges can carry hundreds of thousands of bacteria, including dangerous forms like E. coli and salmonella. Replace your sponges regularly, and make sure to sanitize them frequently by running them through a hot dishwasher cycle or zapping them in the microwave for 60 seconds.
4. A toilet latch – Although pools get the most attention for drowning deaths and injury, toilets are also a major danger. Curious kids can easily lose balance while leaning over and fall headfirst into the bowl. It may not seem like much, but toilets have more than enough water for a child to drown, and a toilet latch to keep little hands from lifting the lid can prove invaluable.
5. Self-closing and self-latching gate hardware for pool fences – For children ages 1-4, the leading cause of death is drowning, and the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission estimates that nearly 300 children each year die due to drowning in swimming pools and spas. While it doesn’t negate the need for adult supervision, a self-closing, self-latching pool gate can help keep kids out of the pool area and significantly reduce the risk of such a tragedy occurring.
6. A carbon monoxide detector – The need for a smoke detector is obvious, but many parents aren’t aware of the importance of having a carbon monoxide alarm. Carbon monoxide or CO is an odorless, invisible gas that can be produced by any variety of household appliances and tools. Exposure to it can result in health problems including dizziness, shortness of breath, fatigue, and even loss of consciousness or death. The best way to avoid this issue is to keep all appliances running properly, have them inspected regularly, and use them according to manufacturer instructions; however, having an alarm gives you extra assurance that your home and children are safe from this gas.
These six products offer just a few easy ways to make your home a safer place for kids. No one can prevent 100% of accidents from occurring, but by using these products, as well as practicing and teaching good overall safety habits, you can help avoid major mishaps, ease your mind, and keep your kids safe.
Kara Alcamo is a concerned mother, freelance writer and contributor to the Ross Feller Casey blog. Visit the website to learn more about these product liability lawyers in Philadelphia.