Congrats on your little one reaching another milestone! Now might be the right time to consider hiring a maintenance company to make your Dubai home safe for your infant. Let ServiceMarket guide you on how you can do that easily. You can do most of these yourself but might have to get assistance from maintenance companies in Dubai for other tasks.
Think in Baby Terms
At 6 months, as babies are just starting to learn and explore everything around them, things that seem mundane to us are obviously fascinating to them. To make sure your house is safe, you need to think like a baby and change how you view things. Get down on your hands and knees and crawl around to see what might be attractive to your baby in each room of the house. For example, what they are likely to touch, pull, push, grab, put in their mouth, etc. This will give you a better idea of what exactly the danger spots are and which areas to tackle.
Secure Furniture etc.
Remove easily-reachable breakables including vases and house plants, and unsafe items like electronics that you might otherwise leave lying around. Anything that might “fall” needs to be secured and/or put away safely and out of reach. Furniture like cabinets, bookcases, shelves, dressers, etc. should all be fixed securely so that they don’t topple over and injure your precious one. You also need to look into securing the television set(s). Mounting them up on the wall keeps your kids out of harm’s way. Explore options like anti-tip straps or get help from your maintenance company to safely secure these things for you.
Eliminate Risks & Hazards
Danger lurks in every corner of the house and often, the best way to prevent accidents from happening is to simply remove the cause.
Babies are likely to injure themselves on pointy edges or corners of furniture as they crawl around, especially those at their height. Cushion these using bumpers or foam pipe insulation (a DIY project or you can get some help from a professional handyman in Dubai!). Another must-have: child gates at the bottom and top of the stairs, along with measures to secure the gap in the staircase banisters, through which children can squeeze through. Moreover, move any “climbable” furniture like chairs away from windows, stairs, balconies, and railings. Balcony doors and windows should always be kept closed or have child safety locks installed.
Invest in good cabinet & drawer locks and latches to prevent fingers slammed in doors, or an infant locked in cabinets or hurting themselves in some other way. This applies to all cabinets and drawers in the home that are within their crawling or walking reach. Usually, under-the-sink cabinets in the kitchens and bathrooms are popular places to keep supplies but these pose a poisoning or injury risk for your infants! Move these to a location that is out of reach of these new explorers and/or always make sure this cabinet is fastened with a proper child lock.
In the kitchen, make sure you get stove knobs covers as well as a stove guard; while keeping utensils and pots away from reach. Plus, around the house, while socket plug-ins are commonly used to prevent electrical mishaps, new research shows that they’re not foolproof. Look into socket covers that cover the WHOLE plug and not just the socket. Other risks include curtain or blind cords which pose a strangulation danger! Loop and twist them out of the way, using cord cleats perhaps.
Precautions in the Bathroom
Don’t forget to secure the bathroom area as well for your little ones! Other than securing cabinets and supplies in the bathroom, it is vital that you have toilet locks as kids can accidentally drown or injure themselves if the heavy lid falls on them. Also, we’re sure no one wants their kid playing with toilet water!
Use non-slip mats, both in and out of the tub/shower, and cover the tub spout to prevent accidental injury, especially to your infant’s head. Keep the shower door closed at all times and in case you have an open shower, a door gate might help. Or if this is not an option, you can just be extra vigilant and develop the habit of making sure that the bathroom door is always closed. Older kids should also be monitored to follow this.
What Else Should You Consider?
- Remove all ‘extra’ blankets, pillows and stuffed animals from the baby’s crib as kids can actually suffocate on these.
- Invest in a good baby monitor but keep it at a distance from the crib and wind the cord properly. You can find good baby monitors and other child safety products in the safety section at Mumzworld.com.
- In the UAE particularly, balconies and windows pose a threat, particularly if you live in a high-rise building. Look into door restrictors, which only open enough to let some fresh air in, or safety netting for balconies.
- For older kids, you can start teaching them responsible safety measures. For example, it is a good idea to keep reminding them not to go on the balcony alone or without permission. Or to always securely lock the baby gate at the top and bottom of stairs as they move around.
- You can also take a first-aid course, which can go a long way to reassure you that in the event of some emergency or accident, you’ll know what to do.
Apart from these measures, always be vigilant and on the lookout in case your baby thinks of something new. Talk to other parents and families around you to help you get a better idea of what to expect. Be sure to consult an experienced handyman or maintenance company in the UAE for more personalized tips.