When you have precious little humans running around, you want them to be safe. You can’t keep an eye on them 24/7. The best thing to do when you have toddlers in the house is to “toddler-proof” it. Yup, just like babies! Although it may require a bit more time and effort to ensure a home is safe for a toddler, it’s something that can not be overlooked.
Toddlers are usually independently mobile and very active. This means that it’s essential to take a few extra steps to ensure their safety. Unlike babies, who may be immobile for quite a while, toddlers usually have the physical ability to explore on their own.
Toddlers have amazing imagination skills and healthy curious thoughts. But their curiosity can also put them in harm’s way. Toddler-proofing your house is a super important part of parenthood! Let’s take a look at some common decor ideas that can be harmful to toddlers.
Houseplants are trendy, natural, and modern decor items. However, some houseplants can be harmful to toddlers. Houseplants such as oleander, philodendrons, and pothos should be completely kept out of the reach of toddlers or totally avoided. These plants can cause diarrhea, swelling, nausea, and potentially life-threatening symptoms if eaten or even touched!
Your toddler may mistake houseplants for the yummy salad you made last night. Or their curiosity and desire to explore might get the better of them! If you’re not able to avoid houseplants altogether, always be sure to monitor your toddler when they are around them. You have to make sure they’re safe!
Toy Boxes and Trunks
Toy boxes are a great organization tool for keeping your toddler’s room or play area neat. But some toy boxes can be incredibly dangerous! Toy boxes with heavy lids can collapse and cause serious injury to your child’s hand or fingers. Or, even worse, their neck or head. When getting a toy box for your toddler, always try to choose one with a light lid.
If you want to ditch the toy box altogether, that’s okay too! There are many trendy toys that double as home decor these days. Wooden toy cameras and xylophones are perfect to keep your toddler entertained while also keeping your home aesthetically pleasing. With lightweight and decorative toys, you’ll never have to worry about your toddler crushing their little fingers.
Traditional wallpaper has been proven to contain heavy metals and chemicals such as lead, tin compounds, cadmium, flame retardants, and phthalates. These harmful chemicals can be linked to learning and developmental delays, asthma, hormonal problems, and more.
Luckily, there are many safe removable wallpaper options available. Having non-toxic wallpaper in your toddler’s room or anywhere in your home is a big plus. Wallpaper provides great mental stimulation to small children. The different colors and shapes really put their brains to work!
Furniture that is tall is considered unstable. Bookshelves, china closets, and storage closets should be bolted to a wall. Toddlers climbing any kind of furniture is dangerous and a great risk to injury. Even worse, toddlers climbing tall furniture can be catastrophic.
Tall furniture can be easily tipped over or tilted. Especially when additional weight is added to its weakest points. You don’t want heavy furniture falling on your toddler! If you can avoid tall furniture, you should. But if you can’t, do your best to firmly secure it to a wall.
Glass Coffee Tables
Glass coffee tables have sharp and blunt edges that can be a recipe for disaster when it comes to toddlers! They can be especially dangerous if your toddler is left unsupervised and they are not walking 100% confidently yet. Always be sure that the edges of your glass coffee tables are covered with high-quality table bumpers.
Even if you have table bumpers, never leave an unsupervised toddler in a room with a glass coffee table. Especially if they are not walking confidently! We know that this is easier said than done, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Window Blind Cords and Improperly Installed Curtains
Toddlers can become entangled in window blind cords and seriously injure themselves. If you can’t avoid window blinds altogether, try to purchase cordless window blinds instead. Toddlers may think that window blind cords are fun strings to play with, but they most certainly are not!
Improperly installed curtains can fall on your toddler’s head, foot, or body. You never want anything to fall on your toddler. A heavy rod holding curtains carries quite a bit of weight, and that much weight becomes dangerous for a toddler that might be underneath it! Always make sure that your curtains are properly installed, especially the curtains in your toddler’s room, playroom, or any area of the house where they will spend a lot of time.
Being the parent of a toddler can be tricky and exhausting. Give yourself one less thing to worry about and make sure that your home decor is toddler-safe! Always do a thorough check of your home. Make sure that everything is in the right place. Double-check that all items are properly installed and secured.
Be sure to make home safety checks a regular part of your parenting routine. Something that may have been perfectly safe six months ago may not be safe today. Toddlers are fun and exciting, but they are also fast and unpredictable. Stay one step ahead of your toddler and remove all of the harmful decor items you may have. For those that can’t be removed, secure them as best as you can!
Carolyn Mitchell is a freelance writer and content strategist with a passion for home décor and maintenance. She can often be found re-painting and updating the furnishings in her home, and she is also a dedicated cat mom to two adorable kitties.