You can’t watch your child every second of the day.
It just takes a split second for them to fall, to drown, to touch a hot stove or open flame, or to consume something poisonous. How many adults do you know that have a scar, physical handicap, or emotional trauma that resulted from an accident they had in the home when they were a child?
The average home contains a huge number of potential pit falls that can put your child in danger, but there are a few gadgets that can help to keep them safe.
The Safety Gate
A child safety gate is one of the most effective tools for keeping your child safe, but it has to be used sparingly and properly. It should be used when your child is either not walking, or not walking well enough to climb; it should be used to block dangerous areas (such as the staircase) but it should not be relied upon at all times or for all ages.
If that gate becomes a permanent fixture in your home, then as your child ages they will discover ways of getting through, around, or over it. They will see it as a challenge, and will do everything they can to get past it, even if it means placing themselves in great danger. Unless your kid is clumsy or is a sleep walker, a child safety gate becomes useless when it is the same height as they are and they are walking, running and climbing.
One of the ways you can prolong its effectiveness is to make sure they have plenty of toys to play with inside their restricted area and that they don’t have too much incentive to escape.
There are a number of devices that can be worn on your child’s wrist or around their neck and will tell you where they are at all times. If you’ve ever lost sight of your child in a public place, even for just a second, you will understand just how essential these devices are. They can give you peace of mind while also helping you to find your child if they are lost.
There are devices that will make a loud noise if they go missing (activated by a connected device held by the parent) or will allow the child to make an instant connection if they lose touch with a parent or guardian.
Family Locators and Notifiers
There are a number of applications and tools, including Family Locator and SafetiPin, that function like intranets for the family. Everyone in the family can connect to the same virtual space and use this to communicate with other family members, to discover where each member of the family is, to send warnings, etc., It’s like a private Facebook for the family and it’s great if you have an older family that always seems to be away from one another.
If you find yourself worried about whether your baby is sleeping safely and soundly, then a breathing/sleeping monitor can help. These devices record movement and breathing, telling you if there is too much or too little of either of these things and then signaling a warning if there is.
The internet can be a dangerous and scary place, filled with content you wouldn’t want your child to see and people you wouldn’t want them to meet. However, it can also be a great education tool if it is used properly and it would be a great shame to deprive your child of this.
Fortunately, there are a number of tools that can provide you with state-of-the-art filters to ensure they browse safely and securely, getting all of the good stuff and none of the bad. These tools allow you to view and control your child’s activity while also making sure they are blocked from accessing mature content.
Swimming Pool Alarms
If you have a swimming pool and young children, then a swimming pool alarm could be one of the wisest investments you ever make. These alarms sit on the side of the pool and measure the tension of the water, detecting when someone has fallen in and then sending a warning to your phone. You can turn them off and on at will, which is helpful if you’re actually monitoring or using the pool, and you can set the app to sound alarms if a pet or child falls in.
Children like to go rooting through cupboards, looking for food, liquids, and anything else they know they shouldn’t be touching. Cleaning products and medicines all have safety catches, but these aren’t foolproof and there are still many dangerous products—alcohol, supplements—that don’t.
One of the ways to prevent them from entering is to use a cupboard door locking device. There are a number of different devices on the market, from magnetic door locks, which provide resistance to stop the child opening the door without creating an inconvenience for the adult, and lever locks, which stop the handle being pulled down and can easily be unlocked by adults.
These devices range in price from a couple of dollars per lock to $100+ for a complete kitchen refit, but it’s well worth the time and money.
Anthony Sarandrea is a writer covering the healthcare sector. He currently writes about healthcare strategic planning for a leading accountancy firm, but has written extensively about fertility, fitness, and more in the past.