As all parents know, once kids can walk their natural curiosity causes them to explore their surroundings any opportunity they get. Because of this, children can be prone to accidents in the home, especially in the bathroom. In fact, more than 40,000 children per year are rushed to the emergency room due to falls and injuries which happened in the bathroom. Many of these accidents are slip and falls due to slippery bathtubs, showers or bathroom floors. In almost all cases, the accidents were not due to parental neglect; the parents were right there, but were unable to catch the child in time before the fall. Parents should be very vigilant regarding bathroom hazards, and ensure their bathrooms are free from potential accidents. Having a kid-friendly and safe home allows parents to have at least a smidgen of serenity and security in knowing your kids are safe and sound while in their home. To make your bathroom truly safe, take note of the following tips and guidelines.
· Always make sure the lid of the toilet bowl seat is down-each year over a hundred children drown in home accidents, and there are reports of 16 children under the age of 5 who drowned in toilets just between 1996 and 1999. Buy and install safety clasps on all toilet bowls in your home. Although the adults may have to practice a bit in order to achieve enough dexterity to easily open the child-proof clasps, they will definitely keep your children safe.
· Obviously you always want to make sure your children are never unsupervised in the bathtub. Not only could the child slip and fall, but could also drown; children drowning in bathtubs account for nearly 2/3 of the drowning deaths in the home. The majority of these deaths occur when a caregiver has stepped out of the room for just a moment to get a towel or answer the phone.
· If you have a garbage can in your bathroom, you must be extra-careful to make sure you do not throw away medicines, cleaning supplies, razors or containers of hairspray in a trash can which could be accessed by a child.
· Don't keep bathroom cleaners under the sink unless you have a child-proof latch on the cabinet; Keep them high up on a shelf that is not accessible by the children, or in a locked cabinet, but never, never where a child could get to them. It only takes a moment for a child to ingest a poisonous substance, and the results can be devastating.
· Medicine cabinets, while convenient for adults, are overall a bad idea in the bathroom. Children have been known to stand on the sink or toilet to reach inside the medicine cabinet, and accidentally swallow medicines or cough syrup. Keep both prescription and non-prescription drugs safely locked away from little hands.
· As with all rooms in the house, install electrical plug covers, and turn down the hot water heater to ensure children are not accidentally burned by turning on a water faucet knob. If you have an electric heater in the bathroom, make it inaccessible to children.
· Install non-slip tub decals to prevent accidental falls in the bathroom as well as mats or rugs on the tile floor to prevent slips.
Bathroom safety for children is extremely important, so it is well worth the time involved to ensure your bathroom is safe and secure for your loved ones.
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