You’ve just had or are about to have a baby. Congratulations! Now you’re worried that your home might be a deathtrap for your newborn. Here are some tips for babyproofing your world from the earliest days through sending them off to grade school.
Much of the babyproofing for newborns revolves around having the right equipment. For starters, you’ll need a properly installed infant-sized car seat to get your baby home.
For naptime – and after the baby has moved out of your room – you’ll want a monitor so you can hear or see them remotely while they’re sleeping.
If you’re breastfeeding, do not drink alcohol or use cannabis to prevent exposing your child to these substances.
Crawlers and toddlers
Before your baby is on the move, you’ll want to remove furniture with sharp edges, or cover the corners with cushioning material, and relocate any potentially dangerous items – flower vases, knife blocks and so on – that a toddler can reach and accidentally pull down onto themselves.
Buy plastic covers to put over electrical outlets and install gates at the top and bottom of any stairways.
Make sure cleaning supplies and other household chemicals are stored up high or in a childproof cupboard.
If you use cannabis, your products should be kept out of sight and reach of children at all times. Store them up high and in a locked cabinet that children can’t open.
As your kids get older and taller, teach them the importance of not turning on appliances like the oven or taking things out of the medicine cabinet.
You’ll also want to streetproof them for when they’re out of the house: crossing the road only at crosswalks or the street corner, being aware of stranger danger and knowing emergency contacts and numbers to call for help.
If you use cannabis, you’ll want to make sure your children don’t accidentally find and consume it. Accidental poisonings in children from edible cannabis products are a serious risk and can be life-threatening. To help reduce the risk, you should only buy cannabis products from legal suppliers. Products from illegal suppliers can contain very high amounts of THC. In addition, illegal cannabis manufacturers often use packaging that mimics popular brands of candy and snacks and kids can’t tell the difference. Legal cannabis products must be sold in plain, child-resistant packaging, and have a limit of 10 mg of THC per package, which helps minimize the risk to children.
Learn more about cannabis safety at canada.ca/cannabis