The following tips will help to prevent avoidable accidents in your child’s bedroom and beyond
You might be the most attentive parent in the world, but it’s impossible to watch your children at all times. Running around after them and cleaning up as you go, you rarely lose sight of them, but you have to sleep, right?
No one wants to think of the kind of accidents that can happen when our backs are turned, but we should always try to minimise risk for our little ones. Creating the perfect environment for them to play, learn and grow in isn’t an unachievable dream. While you can’t cover them in bubble wrap, there are steps you can take to make the constant struggle a little easier.
You’re probably used to telling them to blow on their food and watch for cars when they cross the road, but don’t forget to teach them about safety in the home. Children learn by doing, but that doesn’t mean you have to wait until they have a bump to show them their mistakes.
Warn them and make sure they understand the risks. When you’re telling them not to climb the furniture, explain the reasons why they shouldn’t rather than just telling them not to do something without offering an explanation.
Bedtime is a constant battle for parents, but you can make it easier by monitoring bedroom lighting. This is especially important during the summer months, when they feel as though it’s not time for bed because the sun is still up. This is why creating the illusion of night using blackout blinds is so effective.
A recent survey from Budget Blinds revealed that one of the first things 20% of respondents would do to improve sleep would be to install blackout blinds. Without the distraction of daylight streaming through the windows, your children will soon fall asleep if the room is dark enough. This will help you ease them into a natural routine, ensuring they get the rest they need. Make sure you use a cord safety fixing so that your kids don’t get tangled up if they decide to climb onto the windowsill.
Childproof the windows
Window safety is extremely important as one mistake could have fatal consequences. Make sure windows are latched so that they open a maximum of 10cm and lock them whether they are open or closed to avoid trapped fingers or falls. Avoid placing any furniture near windows to discourage kids from climbing onto the windowsill.
Soften all the edges
We have all experienced that unbearable feeling as our children run past a table corner or the hard edge of a piece of furniture, narrowly avoiding an accident. There is no quick route to childproofing your home, but there are plenty of things you can do to minimise risk, such as introducing safety guards and subtle cushioning. Make sure the furniture used in your child’s bedroom is sturdy and well put together, avoiding any danger of collapsing or tipping. Keep drawers closed when they are not in use as they could cause bumps and falls or be used for unsafe climbing.
Position the bed carefully
Your child will spend a significant portion of time in and around the bed, so think carefully about its location. Don’t place it underneath a window, directly against a radiator or under shelves, ledges or appliances a child could get hold of. Avoid hanging heavy objects such as mirrors above the bed and remove mobiles and dangling toys. Use cabin beds rather than bunk beds for young children as they are safer and provide plenty of storage space.
Use socket protectors
Children are naturally attracted to light switches and plug sockets, so use socket covers to keep plug sockets away from probing fingers. It may also be worth explaining why plug sockets are dangerous so that children are aware of the risk.
Keep toys reachable
If you place attractive toys and games out of your child’s reach, you can guarantee that he or she will mount a targeted climbing mission to gain access to them. Make sure appropriate toys are within reach and keep less suitable games or objects hidden or locked away. If you are using a toy chest, use one without a lid or with a fabric cover rather than a heavy wooden top that could cause damage to little hands and heads.
Use the right paint
Make sure the paint you buy is toxin-free and will stand the test of time. Dulux’s water-based Endurance range, for example, is so durable that you can wipe off all sorts of stains, including mud and colouring pencils, without taking off any paint.
Don’t forget that your toddler or child will visit most or all of the rooms in the house so it may be worth applying some of these principles throughout the household. You don’t have to completely remove all signs of danger from your home, but these simple tips will help to reduce the risk of any potential accidents and injuries.
Did you know…?
…that children aged four to eight rank decorating their room as the second-most important childhood milestone, just behind hosting a birthday party and above their first day at school or losing their first tooth?
…that 92% of kids would spend more time playing in their room if they could help decorate it?
…that children find decorating with their parents a really positive experience, with 65% saying they felt happy and 58% feeling excited at the prospect of helping mum and dad?
Why not design and a safer bedroom for your child with his or her help?
Looking for inspiration for your child’s bedroom?
The following have an excellent selection of kids’ furniture and furnishings, from beds to bedding, storage to lighting solutions: