Make Your Home Child Friendly

Building a family is about creating the right environment for your little ones - it’s about building a home that is warm and comfortable, safe for your children to explore and develop their strength and satisfy their curiosity. It’s about expanding those boundaries week by week, month by month, as they get old enough to start feeling their way in the outside world.

Your home pre-children has a different purpose to your home post-children, and we have put together a handy little guide to help you get your home kid ready.

1. Remove all hazardous objects

It may seem strange if your new bundle hasn’t even arrived yet to be worrying about potential hazards, but the sooner you are aware of all the potential traps that can be found in every possible corner of your home, the better you will be at preventing future accidents.

Do you have blinds or draw curtains at your windows? Then you need to tie up or remove any cords or safety tassels. It might not affect a newborn when it is still swaddled and spending most of the day feeding or sleeping, but it doesn’t take long for that newborn to start reaching out for objects, testing its new world. A baby will start to roll at just three to four months - once it is rolling, it’s only a short hop to crawling. That’s when the trouble really starts!

At this stage, you need to make sure that anything the baby can choke on is removed. Small toys, marbles, burst balloons, pebbles - once they get to six months plus, children love to put everything they possibly can in their mouths. You will find that you spend an awful amount of time scouring the floor for anything the size of a baby’s fist!

2. Make sure your home is free of damp

Recent studies have highlighted how a damp environment can lead to a 50 per cent greater chance of a baby developing asthma in later life. In extreme cases, mold and dampness in a home can lead to fatal respiratory conditions. The recent story about two-year-old Awaab Ishak, who died at the age of just two due to excessive exposure to mold is a timely reminder about how important it is to maintain our homes properly.

Take this opportunity to check your home for any damp spots. Signs to look out for in your home include damp patches that start at floor level and climb up the wall, skirting boards that are damp and soft to the touch, musty, damp smells, a white powdery substance that appears on your wall, peeling paint or wallpaper.

If unsure, call in a commercial damp proofing company who will be able to advise you where the problems are located and treat them at source to make sure your home is dry and free from damp and mold.

3. Create a safe place for adventure!

Once you have removed any object that might cause harm, now you can start introducing objects that can encourage exploration. Invest in some large cushions and brightly covered pouffes and covered stools that will encourage your growing baby to pull themselves upright. Fix some safety catches to kitchen cupboards and encourage your child to explore wider areas and different textures around the home. Make sure that you cover all your electric sockets with safety covers, and then do not get precious about the paintwork, as sticky fingers will always find their way to the cleanest of walls! Attach a temporary blackboard to the wall if you prefer and encourage your child to start improving their dexterity skills by scribbling on the board with different colored chalk.

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