The kitchen is probably one of the most dangerous places in your home for your little one… especially when they’ve learned to crawl and curious to explore anything that they can lay their hands on.
It is not always practical to keep the kitchen completely out of bounds to the little one, for example, there are times when you are alone at home and need to keep the young one close by to keep an eye on.
Dangers are lurking in almost every corner of your kitchen but it is POSSIBLE to baby proof your kitchen to make it a safer place for them.
Here are 15 simple steps you can take to baby proof the kitchen. It is also important that you make some changes to your kitchen habits to accommodate your latest family addition. I’m sure you will find that all these efforts are worth it!
15 Tips To Baby Proof Your Kitchen:
- Unplug electrical appliances, such as toaster or blender, when they're not in used. Put them away as soon as you are finished with them and never leave the cables lying around. Not only are the cables strangling hazards, your little one can easily pull the loose cables, bringing everything down tumbling onto him/her.
- Do not leave anything near the edge of counter-top or tables. Even if you think that the table or counter-tops are too high, do not leave anything to chance. Your curious toddler may be tip-toeing or climbing up drawer handles while pulling/grabbing anything they can get hold of.
- Do not leave hot beverages or food unattended as any spillage can result in serious scalding.
- Keep sharp objects, such as knives and forks, as well as medications out of sight and out of reach from the little one. If possible, keep them in drawers or shelves that are beyond the reach of your little toddler. However, that is not always possible or practical. Install safety locks to your drawers and cabinets as additional precaution.
- Keep harsh kitchen and cleaning chemicals out of reach from the little ones. They should be kept on the highest shelf. Alternatively, secure the cabinets with safety locks so that the little ones cannot access them freely.
- Baby proof your dishwasher. We often forget that the dishwasher provides the little one an instant access to detergent, sharp knives, forks and breakables. As always, there’s no harm using a safety latch as a safety precaution. Do remember to keep the dishwasher closed and latched, place sharp utensils facing down and only add the detergent just before running the load.
- Keep the kitchen dry and clean up any spillage as soon as possible to avoid falls.
- Be mindful of plastic bags. Keep them on high shelves and do not leave it lying around as it can be a suffocation hazard if the child puts the plastic bag around his head.
- Glass wares and breakables should be kept out of reach of the little one. Only plastic or wooden wares should be left on the lower shelves/cabinets.
- Baby proof your stoves and ovens by making use of plastic knob covers. Also, make it a habit to use the inner stoves for cooking and turning the handles to face inwards if you are using the front stoves.
- Trash cans can be huge fun for the curious little one with lots of colourful items to pull out. Most trash cans with lids do not come with a latch. You can easily install an adhesive mounted safety latch to secure it.
- Secure your fridge with adhesive mounted safety locks to prevent your little one from rummaging through the contents of the fridge.
- Microwaves can be an attractive toy to a young child as there are many interesting buttons to press and explore. You may think that microwaves are often placed at heights well above a young child so it’s not a concern. But this is not the case when the kid is sitting on a baby high chair and the microwave is at an arm’s length away… Hence, do unplug it when not it used and keep it closed with a safety latch.
- There are multi-purpose safety locks available that you can install for various applications as mentioned above (drawers/cabinets/fridges/trashcans/microwaves) and more to keep anything you deemed unsafe out of reach from your little one.
TIP: Never let your little one see how you open the safety locks as these clever toddlers learn best by imitation.
- If you are keeping your baby in the kitchen alone with you in the kitchen while cooking, make sure that the baby is securely seated in a baby chair with firm straps. Never cook with your little one in one arm!