We all know to protect our little ones from dangers like scissors, knives, ovens, stove plates and other hot surfaces. We know about the risks that sharp edges and corners pose. However, there is a whole host of surprising dangers that could harm children in our homes, one of which is the shower curtain.
Toddlers are curious about anything they come across. Parents, grandparents, and even babysitters and nannies should be aware of all the potential risks around the home. A woman who worked as a nanny in several countries shared her experiences and provided a list of potentially harmful everyday items present in most homes.
The dangers in the cupboard under the sink
In most homes, the cupboard under the sink is the storage place for household cleaners. The door handle is low enough for any young child to open. Which toddler would not want to explore the colorful collection of bottles, cloths, capsules or pods for the dishwasher and washing machine? Besides, they might get hold of bleach, drain cleaner, carpet cleaner, ammonia and air freshener. Some people also store antifreeze, mothballs, insecticides and paint below the sink.
Electrical sockets pose dangers for curious toddlers
Many of the electrical sockets around your home are easily reachable. Tiny explorers find the mysterious holes fascinating, and they can’t resist poking them with their tiny fingers.
Curtain ties, twine, strings and ribbons pose suffocation dangers
Whether you’re a crafter or have strings, ribbons and twine lying around for wrapping presents, remember that they could cause harm in the hands of a young child. Store them out of reach to avoid small hands getting entangled in them.
Sticks of all kinds could cause harm
Children may find sticks in the backyard, pens or pencils lying around inside the house, or even cocktail sticks or kebab skewers; they are all dangerous. Toddlers put anything in their mouths, and if they run and fall with a stick in their mouth could cause catastrophic injuries.
Needles, pins, nails and thumbtacks
Anything with sharp points poses risks of injuries. They can cause painful punctures, and imagine the danger if a small child should swallow a thumbtack or other sharp pin.
Dangers posed by balconies, terraces, staircases
Along with the risk of toddlers falling from balconies and terraces, floor-to-ceiling glass doors are also dangerous. Stickers at eye level for both toddlers and adults can prevent crashing into the glass of a closed door. Most importantly, never leave doors onto balconies and terraces open. Supervise children and never leave them alone — not even for a few seconds. That is all it takes for children to fall to their death. Similarly, take precautions to prevent children from falling down stairways.
Prickly plants with thorns often forgotten dangers
When such plants are indoors, position them high enough to be unreachable by toddlers. However, if they are outside in your garden, create some kind of barrier to keep kiddies away from them.
Attractive dangers like potpourri, incense sticks and decorative flowers
These are all items that could attract exploring and curious toddlers. If they are within reach, be sure it will land in your child’s mouth.
Even cosmetics are dangerous
The attractive packaging of perfumes, nail varnish and remover and moisturizers will be like magnets for toddlers to explore, lick and drink.
Kitchen hazards include more than knives
While ensuring your child cannot get hold of a kitchen knife, put the potato peeler and cheese grater out of reach also. Similarly, do not leave your blender and juicer where tiny hands can reach it.
All medicines must be safely stored and unreachable
Not even the most seemingly insignificant tablet or medicine is safe for young children to “taste.” Colorful capsules and tablets are no different from candies for toddlers. In like manner, prevent your child from getting to slug pellets and other garden products.
Ties, scarves, belts, bathrobe ties, dog leads etc. etc.
Anything of similar shape could be scattered around the home. For example, picture dad coming home after a hectic day. He would likely already have his tie removed and drop it on the couch as he sits down to relax. Therefore, note that all strappy-like things pose choking and suffocation dangers.
Don’t leave jewelry where little girls can reach it
Small pieces like stud earrings can easily land up in your child’s ears, nose or stomach. Kiddies cannot resist shiny, colorful things, so store your jewelry safely.
Shower curtains and plastic bags can kill
Plastic shower curtains are as dangerous as plastic bags that are big enough to fit over a child’s head. Children love wrapping themselves by grabbing the shower curtain and turning around and around. Suffocation can happen in seconds, so make sure your tie a plastic shower curtain away or loop it over the rail. Similarly, take special care to leave plastic bags safely stored away. You don’t want your child to play peek-a-boo with plastic bags.
Place room diffusers out of reach
Bottles or other containers with colorful room diffusers look very much like juice and could land in your toddler’s stomach. If yours have those sticks poking out of them, it makes the danger a double whammy.