There is no greater parental instinct than the impulse to protect your young, however, even though we would spring to shield our little ones from a prancing predator, home safety often goes unprotected or worse unknowingly ill prepared. There are two main precautions that need to be carefully geared up before bringing home our precious new bundles. First and foremost, a safe sleep environment and secondly, preparing our primary living space for our babies progressing stages of mobility i.e. rolling, crawling, walking to climbing.
Firstly let’s cover cot safety as SIDS prevention is one of the main safety precautions a new parent can carry out. First tip of the day: do not let fashionable sleep equipment fool you into believing they are safe. Always check if the given sleep article has been passed by the world health organization (WHO) or AAP. Devices such as infant sleep pods, nests, positioners etc are all a SIDS risk according to WHO however due to the current sleep trend are being unknowingly utilised.
A safe sleep environment includes the following according to the AAP:
1. A clutter free cot free from bumpers, blankets and toys until 6 months of age. Before this baby does not bear the ability to remove an object pressed against their face, potentially causing suffocation.
2. Always sleep baby on their backs or side.
3. Room sharing is encouraged until 6-12 months.
4. No bed sharing or co-sleep if possible.
5. Studies have shown breast feeding reduces SIDS by at least 50%
6. Do not smoke, drink or take drugs around your baby.
7. Check all aspects of their cot. Are their nails, screws or splinters sticking out? Flaking paint, or their mattress at the wrong height according to your lying, sitting or standing baby?
Preparing our primary living space can be overwhelming at times as everything might feel like a threat. Yes, we might have to fight off the urge to clear everything but the 4 white walls; nevertheless room safety can be easily achieved by following these 3 easy rules: 30 – 60 – 90!
1. 30 rule – ensure anything below 30cm is 100% child proof for your back lying and rolling baby. This will include small items easily choked on such as animal pellets, marbles, loose change and lego, ropes or exposed wires etc once your baby learns to roll there is nothing stopping them from rolling under tables, couches or worse down a flight of stairs.
2. 60 rule – ensure anything below 60cm is even more child proof once baby starts to crawl. There is a huge increase in home accidents once baby starts to crawl. We want to ensure all wall sockets are covered with kid safe covers, units securely fitted to the wall and inside flower pots planted with non toxic plants. This also includes non toxic fertilizer and eco friendly pesticide as well.