You do all you can to keep your bundle of joy safe, but did you know that your baby's safety can start before she even makes her grand entrance into the world? Before you feather your nursery with tip-over hazards, discover these life-saving tips for baby furniture safety.
In-home tip-over tragedies a real threat to kids
Every two weeks a child dies when a television, appliance or a piece of furniture falls on him or her, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. In a recent report, the CPSC estimates emergency department-treated tip-over injuries and fatalities between 2009 and 2011 added up to alarming numbers, of which two-thirds of victims were ages 1 to 4 years old:
- 25,400 (59 percent) injuries involved children under 18 years of age.
- 294 (84 percent) fatalities involved kids ages 1 month to 8 years old.
- 18,900 (44 percent) injuries and 215 (62 percent) fatalities involved a TV or television plus furniture falling.
- 22,600 (52 percent) injuries and 105 (30 percent) fatalities involved only furniture falling.
- 1,600 (4- ) injuries and 29 (8 percent) fatalities involve appliances falling.
- Tip-overs in these specific categories included injuries to the internal organs, contusions and abrasions, lacerations and fractures.
- Tip-overs also caused fatalities due to crushing, hit or struck but not crushed, and positional asphyxia to the head or torso.
Baby furniture safety tips
But furniture isn't the only source of tip-over accidents when it comes to babies, toddlers, kids and even teens. Sometimes what's lurking in your bundle of joy's nursery can be just as much of a tip-over threat. "When it comes to children's furniture, safety should be a parent's first priority," advises Arno Yesayan, CEO and founder of ACE Baby Furniture. "Avoid using secondhand cribs and baby furniture since there might be missing parts or other structural issues that could be harmful to your child's well-being. Also, older furniture may not include all the safety features that newer models have to abide by." Here are some tips to keep your baby safe around both old and new baby furniture, household appliances and more.
Watch for toppling highchairs
A highchair may seem like a harmless feeding apparatus, but active kids can send it falling over.
- Ensure that your kiddo is safely strapped in at all times and never allow them to stand.
- Stay within arm's length and keep the highchair away from wall, counter, table or other firm surface that your youngster can push off from to tip the highchair over.
- Double-check that the highchair and wheels are firmly locked into place, and never allow kids to hang or climb on the outside of the highchair.
Steer clear of baby walkers
Infamous for the highest source of injuries, baby walkers can cause accidents even when you're keeping a watchful eye on your cruising kiddo.
- Baby walkers are prone to tipping over when toddlers try to cross over a door threshold, carpet edge or other uneven surface.
- Opt for an activity center instead that keeps your active child stationary.
- For babies who just love their walkers too much to walk away from them, only let your child use the walker on smooth surfaces.
Keep a close eye on infant carrier seats
While infant carrier seats —or baby buckets as they are sometimes fondly called — keep your bundle of joy secure when riding in the car, they may not be safe for Baby when misused outside of the base.
- Keep your baby safely strapped in whenever sitting in the infant carrier seat, even when not in the car, in case an active youngster rocks the seat enough to tip over.
- Avoid setting the baby in the infant car seat on a soft or high surface, such as a bed, couch or counter; an infant can rock the safety seat enough to cause it to tip over.
- Stay within reach of the baby in the carrier when junior's riding inside.
Latch dressers and shelves
Using the drawers or shelves as steps, young kids can easily scale te common household furnishings and be crushed underneath when the furniture tips over.
- Install latches on drawers to keep them closed to young climbers.
- Attach anchors to secure shelving, dresser or cabinet drawers or furniture that is susceptible to tipping over.
- Purchase dressers with a baby-safety feature that only allows one drawer to be opened at a time, to reduce the likelihood that baby furniture will tip over.
Many new televisions mount to the wall, but there are plenty of homes with flat-screen televisions that are supported by a tabletop stand, as well as older televisions that are wide enough to hang off of a shelf and tip over onto your little one.
- Keep kids far away from large televisions and discourage play under or around the heavy TV.
- Utilize an appropriately sized stand that supports the entire base of the television, leaving no overhanging sides.
- Purchase anti-tipping devices for your TV, designed specifically with baby safety in mind.
Whether it is your first child or your fifth or more, keeping your home safe for baby doesn't have to drive you to insanity. As scary as tip-over hazards can be, the reality is that these life-saving tips for baby furniture safety can keep your kids out of harm's way.
More Safety Tips
Before you buy, explore these baby furniture safety tips from ACE Baby Furniture:
- NO SHARP CORNERS: Look for baby furniture that doesn't have sharp corners; especially with cribs.
- WATCH OUT FOR DRAWERS: Any type of baby furniture that has drawers should have soft closing slides (hardware) in order to prevent little fingers from getting jammed.
- AVOID TOXINS IN STAINED FURNITURE: If the furniture is dyed or stained, make sure it is free of volatile organic components (VOCs).
- MADE IN THE U.S.A.: Find baby furniture that is made right here in the U.S. Every year the safety regulations change, and this helps keep the U.S. manufacturers fully up-to-date.
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