As your toddler becomes taller and more mobile & wondering around, you nead to continuosly reassess your baby proofing and childproofing strategies. Kitchens can be a dangerous place for a child, but accidents around the house can be easily prevented by taking a few precautions and child-proofing your kitchen space, appliances as well as your home could well be the difference between an injury and safe living.

Below are some tips on Kitchen Childproofing for Toddlers

Out of reach and harms way
When children become toddlers, they add height to their reach and gain speed because they are upright and walking more. At this time children are the most inquisitive with objects they can see. Keep all kitchen appliances well to the rear of your counter tops and store away in a cupboard when not in use. Dangling cords over the bench are an accident waiting to happen if there are small children in the house. Prevention only takes a few seconds which is all it takes for an injury.

Start education early
Start the education process early and be sure to let children know what can happen if they try to jag a piece of bread out of the toaster with a knife for example. Remind them of the dangers of a kitchen and set the rules for playing areas well away from ovens and home appliances. The earlier you start an awareness program the less chance of accidents occurring.

Kitchen Utensils
Keep forks, knives, cleavers and other sharp items away from baby by putting them in latched drawers. Never leave them out so baby can get to them. Always keep them inside locked drawers when not in immediate use. Keep the key to the drawer away from baby’s reach. Put safety locks in before your child is old enough to get to them and not after something bad happens. Make certain to keep poisons, cleaners, and detergents away from the reach of your child. Place the garbage behind a locked cabinet or put it in the garage so the baby cannot get into it and dig out something dangerous.

Keep toasters and electric appliances toward the back of the cabinet and out of baby’s reach. Make sure the cords are bundled up so they don’t dangle and hurt the baby. His is especially true when the appliance is hot and in use at the time.

The kitchen is filled with hazardous substances and areas where baby can get hurt. Before that happens, you need to rethink how your kitchen is organized so that you can keep your child safe when in the kitchen. We should take a look at many of the best choices out there for childproofing your kitchen.

Buy Child Safety Locks for Your Cabinets
Cabinet doors that are below your counter are at the perfect level for children. First there is the danger of the children opening and closing the cabinet doors. Your child could slam his fingers in the door, or stick them in the crevice behind the door. The second child safety issue is what the cabinets contain. There are obvious concerns such as detergent, and other toxic substances that are usually kept underneath the sink, but there are the not so obvious concerns too. Kids love to play with pots and pans, but it should be under supervision. If your toddler pulls out the pots and pans he could hurt himself, or bang up your walls and floor. Child safety locks are a great solution for child proofing your cabinets. There are two basic kinds. One kind connects the handles of the cabinets so that they can’t be pulled open, but this means your cabinet needs to have double doors. The other kind is best for cabinets with one door. These attach to the top of the cabinet, and only allow it to open about an inch when pulled.

Lock Your Drawers
Drawer locks are similar to cabinet locks. They only allow your kitchen drawers to be open about an inch when pulled, unless unlatched. Child proofing your kitchen drawers is critical. Think of the items your store in your drawers. Silverware is stored in drawers. Obviously knives are dangerous (even butter knives, but also forks can be dangerous). Many people have junk drawers in their kitchens. Junk drawers may be home to matches, and other dangerous items. Take the precaution, and child proof your drawers.

Make sure you use approved safety latches on drawers and cabinets so that the baby cannot open these items more than an inch or two. You’ll need to lock those cabinets if the baby is older because he or she can get past the latches and it won’t be safe then.

Put Plugs on All Outlets
Outlet plugs are important, not only in child proofing your kitchen, but in apartment safety in general. Every outlet in your apartment should be plugged when not in use.

Cords and plugs
Maintenance checks not only of your small appliances but also the cords and plugs should be carried out regularly. Check for any frayed cords and have them repaired or replace the unit. Overloaded power points can cause sparks so be sure to have adequate outlets that have been installed by a qualified electrician. Follow the operating instructions and unplug an appliance by the plug and not by pulling on the cord.

Prevent Injuries from Stove and Oven
Purchase knob covers for your stove. These will help prevent your child from fiddling with them. Also, install an oven lock to prevent your child from opening and closing the oven, and getting inside, burning himself, or slamming his fingers. Another consideration is purchasing a similar type lock for the refrigerator.

Childproof locks for stove and oven knobs
Childproof locks for stove and oven knobs as well as kitchen cupboards are easily purchased from hardware store and only take a few minutes to install making them well worth the effort and money.

Oven guards
It only takes a second for a child to fall against the hot surface of the oven door. Burns can happen in an instant. Oven guards are a must if you have toddlers. It is just not possible to keep them away from the kitchen if that is where everyone else in the family is, so again prevention makes sense.

Your stove is a big hazard for your toddler. Keep a stove that is high enough so that the toddler can’t get his hands up there. Turn the pot handles inward when cooking so that the baby cannot reach up and grab a hot handle. In fact, it pays to keep the child away from the stove when you are cooking anything as things can become boiled over and can injure your toddler.

Use the back burners whenever you can when you are using the stove top. Put child safety locks or latches on the knobs of the stove so the baby cannot turn the knobs and turn on the oven or stove. Get a latch or locks so the baby cannot open the oven door. Open ovens that are turned on can release noxious gases into the house and can be dangerous.

Get a Baby Gate
You may not need to use it all the time, but a baby gate for your kitchen will come in handy when you are cooking or cleaning. If you are constantly opening and closing the oven, refrigerator, cabinets and drawers, the best child safety is to ban your child from the kitchen. Put up the baby gate, and take it down when you are done.

Sensible cooking techniques
Practicing sensible cooking techniques becomes second nature after a while. Cook on back burners whenever possible and turn handles in on cooktops. Keep flames on gas stove tops well under the edge of the pan and avoid high heat frying to prevent igniting oil.

While children love to help in the kitchen they should always be under the supervision of a responsible adult. Make sure they are not in a position to reach in to the bowl of a hand mixer as it is running for instance and if they have to stand on a chair to reach the bench make sure it is stable.

Statistics have shown the majority of accidents involving children occur in and around the home. Prepare well and practice sensible cooking techniques to prevent electrical shorts and food fires on stove tops and in ovens thus making the kitchen a place of safety instead of a danger zone.


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