Your Baby & Toddler - - Talking Point - Source: www.par­

Make a point of look­ing at the world from your child’s per­spec­tive and act ac­cord­ingly. Be proac­tive and work on the as­sump­tion that you can sim­ply never be too care­ful or too cau­tious. Check out your home on your hands and knees to see the dan­gers that could be lurk­ing and tick off the fol­low­ing: Are there safety gates at the top and bot­tom of stairs? Are all the floor-level elec­tri­cal sock­ets cov­ered? Are all doors and win­dows lock­able? Are all pos­si­ble poi­sons such as medicines, vi­ta­mins, clean­ing ma­te­ri­als, cig­a­rettes, toi­letries and other toxic sub­stances out of reach or locked away?

Have you moved poi­sonous or prickly plants out of reach – or got rid of them? Com­mon poi­sonous South African plants in­clude sy­ringa, ery­th­rina (lucky bean), cas­tor oil plant, chincher­inchee, fox­glove, stinkblaar/jim­son weed, lark­spur (del­phinium), ole­an­der, acokan­thera and many fungi, es­pe­cially mush­rooms and toad­stools.

Are there child-proof catches or locks on the fridge, toi­lets and kitchen cup­boards?

Are sharp knives and scis­sors stored in a safely locked drawer or up out of reach?

Are flexes and cords such as those on lamps, ket­tles and irons well out of reach? Any­thing dan­gling down could be pulled down on top of your baby’s head. Make sure pot han­dles are turned in­wards too, so that baby can’t pull them off the stove. Don’t carry your child and a hot drink at the same time. Keep hot drinks and other ob­jects well away from the edges of ta­bles.

Keep hair dry­ers, toast­ers and other ap­pli­ances un­plugged and out of reach.

Never, ever leave your tod­dler alone in (or near) the bath or near a pool, a toi­let or a con­tainer of wa­ter – in­clud­ing buck­ets. A child can drown in only a few cen­time­tres of wa­ter.

Make sure you have lay­ers of safety around dan­ger­ous ar­eas, es­pe­cially the pool, which should have a fence, net and alarms. En­sure that your baby doesn’t play on the drive­way be­hind cars.

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