Home safety expert Roger Cheetham from Clippasafe provided expert advice in our Wednesday Supper Club Q&A.
Accidents in the home are on the rise and they most often affect young children. From burns and scalds, to falls and even risks of furniture toppling, find out what the most common hazards are and what you can do to keep your children safe.
Here at Mother&Baby we bring you the Wednesday Supper Club – a chance to get brilliant advice for your parenting questions from a top expert. Over on the Mother&Baby Facebook page our readers put questions to home safety expert and Managing Director of Clippasafe, Roger Cheetham.
For 55 years, the Clippasafe team has been addressing dangers around the home, as well as in the car and out and about; helping to eliminate them with innovative products and giving parents peace of mind. Recently, they even had the honour of providing a harness for HRH Prince George!
As Managing Director of family company Clippasafe, Roger is at the forefront of child injury prevention and has advised parents on all aspects of keeping the home environment safe.
Here is the Q&A in full:
Q: "How can I stop my little boy, who's three, climbing on the furniture?"
A: It's important that children know what your and their limits are. You have to be firm with him. Tell him what is acceptable and what is not.
It is important to minimise the risks of a serious injury if he does try to climb. Ensure that tall furniture such as book cases are secured to the wall with Anti-Tip Furniture Straps, and the TV is also secured with Anti-Tip Straps.
Q: "I've just booked next year's holiday and I'm worrying already that it's going to be a nightmare. The villa has an unfenced pool, and my now-five-month-old baby will be crawling. What can I do so that we don't have to spend every second watching her?"
A: I recommend that you take with you or hire a travel cot or play pen. These are collapsable and usually fit neatly into a carrybag. Always ensure that you place it in the shade, pop in baby and few toys and you can be content that baby is in a soft and safe zone whilst catch the rays.
Q: "Is it safe to leave my toddler on his own with our family dog? How can I make it safer?"
A: I would never leave a dog, however soft and friendly, alone with a toddler. One or the other could so easlily do something to the other that results in the dog snapping back, or worse. Would you ever be able to forgive the dog or yourself if your child was injured ? Unless you are personally supervising them, keep them in separate rooms.
A safety gate fitted across the doorway is a good way of separating your dog and child from each other.
Q: Now that the weather is getting colder and our central heating is firmly back on, how can we keep little fingers safe from hot radiators?
A: It's important to keep children away from all sources of heat, not just radiators. Always fit a Fireguard around your fire and hearth. Fireguards can also be used around radiators, alternativelty decorative radiator covers can be used. if you have a free-standing stove, Clippasafe also supply Fireguard depth extensions to extend the Fireguard to fit around these too.
Q: "My little girl is fascinated by our stairs. We have stairgates but I'm not sure when and how to teach her how to go up and down safely - any tips?"
A: In comparison to an adult, each stair is a huge step for a small child. When you child is tall enough to manage each step without crawling, take them up and down the stairs whilst holding their hand on the opposite side to the stair rail, whilst they hold the hand rail themselves with their other hand. Ensure that they go up/down one step at a time, and slowly. Make sure that you can grap the handrail yourself if one or both of you become unstable.