As a parent, having a baby-proof house is one of the best ways to ensure your toddler has the freedom they need to do their curious explorations. They need this freedom to develop their imagination, dexterity, cognitive and physical abilities as well as their fine motor skills and developmental milestones. Seeing your toddler hit their milestones is one of the most rewarding parts of being a parent, so giving them the safe environment to do so should be every parent’s priority.
Baby-proofing your furniture should be the first step. If you are not already established and you have the ability to do so, design your space with your baby at the forefront of your mind. For instance, eliminate or substitute furniture that might cause any amount of harm. Tap into your creative side to see what kind of substitutions you can come up with. A chic ottoman with a tray can be used as a coffee table instead of an actual coffee table with sharp edges.
You may also want to consider the safety of your furniture from your child, in which case, choosing seating that has distressed leather is suggested, since it will be able to take the inevitable spills, stains and scratches.
Furniture that you already own can be baby-proofed. Tall and top-heavy furniture is at the most risk of toppling over. You can either choose to anchor this type of furniture to the wall or use furniture brackets or L brackets to secure them. Brackets are attached to the back of the furniture and then attached to a stud in the wall. Two brackets are usually required to hold each piece of furniture in place.
L brackets are restraints, usually with two brackets tethered by a strap or cable. One bracket is screwed directly into the furniture and the other is screwed into the wall. The connector is fixed to each bracket and then tightened into place. These types are also used as protection from earthquake damage.
Another proofing accessory you will need are furniture corner protectors. This proofing applies to lower furniture that might be on the level of your baby, where they may hit their head such as coffee tables.
For cabinets and other kinds of furnishing storage, pay close attention to the bolts and locks to ensure they are secure and closed. There are several types of locks on the market that you can use including magnetic locks, adhesive “strap” locks, spring action locks and cord locks. These proofing tips apply mainly to shared rooms in your house. For your child’s room, it is most appropriate to use child-appropriate furniture like the items offered by Franklin and Ben baby furniture. These furnishings were specifically designed with children but be sure to double-check for potential hazards. If you are unsure about your proofing, get down to your child’s level and try to get the perspective their curious minds have. It just might surprise you how tempting your unassuming, sliding office chair looks from their level.