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Kitchen

IN THE KITCHEN

  • Keep toddlers out of the kitchen with a safety gate when you are cooking or otherwise distracted. Turn pot handles away from the front of the stove so your child cannot grab them. Use only the back burners when possible.
  • Loop appliance cords (one or two large loops lightly secured with a twist-tie rather than a spiral of small loops) so that children cannot pull appliances off the bench. Electric cord clamps are also fantastic for keeping cords out of the way neatly and efficiently.
  • Unplug appliances when they're not in use. Make sure that appliance cords do not dangle over the edges of counters where curious children may tug at them.
  • Store all cleansers, toothpicks, plastic bags and other hazardous items high above a child's reach in a locked cabinet.
  • Take care with hot liquids around your baby. Keep your tea, coffee or soup far enough away so that if it spills, it won't fall on her.
  • IAFCS makes a recommendation that goes aheads a long-standing tradition: don't allow your children to play with pots and pans. Because these items are cooking utensils, not toys, they say you're sending the wrong message if you allow your toddler to play with a pot and call it a drum. They child won't understand why it's okay to play with these items on the floor, but not okay to reach up and pull them off the stove.
  • Cook on backburners on the stove, and turn the handles to the sides.
  • Store knives, scissors and other sharp utensils in locked drawers or cabinets
  • Store glassware out of children's reach.
  • Hang a working fire extinguisher within your reach but high enough to be out of young children's reach.
  • Remove stove dials or cover them with childproof caps.
  • Keep children away from uninsulated oven doors.
  • Install safety locks on drawers, especially if they contain dangerous objects.
  • Place a lock on your microwave to prevent young children from using it. Never allow children under the age of eight to use the microwave.
  • Keep hot foods and liquids away from the edges of tables. Do not use tablecloths or place mats around babies or toddlers to reduce the risk of a child pulling hot foods and beverages down on himself.
  • Don't let your baby stand up in her high chair. Ensure the chair is fitted with a five-point harness or purchase a separate harness.
  • Remove fridge magnets as they can fall off if the food is slammed and pose a choking threat, especially if they break.
  • Remove butchers'-block knife stands from counters as your baby can easily grab a sharp knife from the block while you are carrying her around the kitchen. If this does happen, the International Association of Children's Safety (IAFCS) advises you not to grab the knife by the blade, but instead gently squeeze the baby's wrist so she releases it.

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