Health & Safety

How to Baby-Proof Your Home for Those First 12 Months

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Bringing a newborn into this world can be nerve-wracking enough for newly minted parents, so having to worry about a house that’s not child-friendly should be the last thing on any parents’ mind. The act of baby-proofing is simply to make a house safe and hospitable for newborns, and is a necessity prior to bringing your baby home from the hospital.

Here’s a handy guide for things to ensure are taken care of, just before the day comes around, including how to prep every room in the home. That way, you can have a peace of mind and truly enjoy the company of your new little one.


Kitchens are just one of those spots that new parents would likely keep their kids away from, as this is after all where sharp objects can be found.

  • Kidspot Australia suggests to secure all cupboards and drawers by placing child-proof locks on them. This can ensure that your child does not have access to products such as detergents and cleaning substances.
  • Avoid using table cloths with young kids as they tend to tug at things that they can see, and all the contents of the table can topple over and risk harming them in the process.
  • Alternatively, if you’re willing to spend on renovation, a barrier can be erected across the kitchen doorway so as to discourage and prevent your kid from entering whilst you’re cooking.
  • Lock up medicines, vitamins, cleaning products, pet food and alcohol.

Living Room

The living room is ideally a place of relaxation, however according to the study of Unintentional Home Injuries in Malaysia 2011, this particular location accounts for 42.2% of the home injuries sustained by children. As such, special precaution should be taken to avoid injuries in the living room, and this includes paying close attention to furnishings.

  • Corner guards can be purchased to protect your child against the sharp furniture edges.
  • Parenting.com suggests checking your plants to ensure that they are not poisonous.
  • Tape down electrical cords.
  • Secure hardware-mounted safety gates at the top and bottom of the stairs so as to avoid falls.


Giving your newborn his or her bath should be an enjoyable process and here’s how to make the process easier on both you and your little one.

  • Babycenter.com suggests filling the bathtub with just enough water to cover your baby’s legs (about 2 to 3 inches of water).
  • Test the bathwater on your skin to ensure that it is neither too hot nor too cold.
  • Place nonslip mats in the bathtub itself so even if your child moves around, they will not slip.
  • Lastly, opt to install a toilet seat lock so your baby does not have access to a pool of water which can cause drowning.

Bedroom/Baby Cot

Invite comfort into the room where your baby will likely spend most of his or her time in, especially during the early stages of their life.

  • Tinies.com suggests choosing a mattress that is firm and one that is specifically made for the baby cot. It should fit snugly into the cot, and there should be no more than the width of two fingers between the mattress and the cot itself.
  • The usage of blankets and covers should be used with discretion as babies may tug at it during their rest and can be unaware when the blanket covers their face and obstructs breathing.
  • Sheepskins, and stuffed toys should be avoided within the cot for similar reasons.

Dining Room

Dining rooms are where meals will be conducted and in between meals, your child might get distracted and hence it is essential things out of sight and out of mind.

  • Fold tablecloth corners away, so that tugging at it does not become an option.
  • AskDrSears.com suggests that you can also push table items/meal plates toward the center.
  • Install latches on dish cabinets, and pushing chairs all the way in so your baby can’t crawl/climb up on them when they get the chance to.

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Text by Anna Lee.

Image Credit: Dad for Beginners.