Once your children are old enough to start moving around independently, whether that’s waddling or crawling, the kitchen becomes a dangerous area. From hobs to sharp cupboard corners and open plug sockets, there’s numerous risks in the kitchen, especially at mealtimes.
So, when preparing for a child, or when redoing your kitchen, here’s eight ways you can make your kitchen baby friendly.
Eight Ways to Childproof Your Kitchen
1. Get Rid of Tablecloths
If you have tablecloths on your kitchen table, it’s best to get rid of them for a few years. Babies and toddlers look for things to grab on to, either to suck or to hold on to help them get up, and if a tablecloth is dangling within their reach, they won’t hesitate to give it a tug. If they do, anything on it will come tumbling down, and you’ll end up with a lot of smashed crockery and a screaming child.
For this reason, it’s best to put the tablecloths away, and if you want to protect your tables, use a secured cover. You can normally get fitted tablecloths, which are like fitted sheets.
2. Install Safety Locks and Catches on Cupboards and Drawers
Safety locks and catches will prevent your little ones getting into places they shouldn’t. No one wants to find their child stuck inside a cupboard filled with pots and pans or getting all manner of dangerous substances such as washing powder in their eyes.
For this reason, having latches on doors can prevent these kinds of accidents happening, and also give you peace of mind that you can let your small one into the kitchen with less worry. As kitchens are great places for children to explore and learn without any worry about making mess, securing your cupboards means that your children can be children without you needing to stress.
3. Unplug Worktop Appliances When Not in Use
Like with tablecloths, appliances are easy to pull, and this makes it tempting for small children, especially when they’re in the grabby stage. Even if seated in a highchair, they will try and pull at anything within their reach.
Always unplug and fasten any cables away, and if possible, store the items as far back on the counter as possible or, ideally, in cupboards.
4. Remove Fridge Magnets
Loose items like fridge magnets are an easy choking hazard. If the magnet becomes loose or breaks, then it’s easy for a child to try and eat it, before choking.
While built-in fridges are much more common these days, for those who don’t box theirs in, fridge magnets are extremely tempting for little ones to grab. For this reason, it’s best to put the fridge magnets away when small children are around.
5. Secure Bins
Bins are yet another thing found in the kitchen that are easy for a small child to pull over. You should either secure them to the wall, or to an inside of a cupboard. This is a simple way to prevent them from being knocked over, and the bins contents spilt onto the floor (or the child).
It’s also a good idea to get bins that have a lid, not an open top. This will make it less tempting, and more difficult to grab onto as it becomes one smooth surface.
6. Use Anti-Slip Pads on Rugs or Floors
To prevent toddling feet from slipping on kitchen floors, consider installing anti-slip rug pads under any rugs, or on the floor itself. This means that you can be safe in the knowledge that when the little pitter patter of feet starts getting quicker, they’ll be safe from slipping on your kitchen floor. You can use rug tape or similar to secure, and this is normally secured easily to the floor with no damage.
7. Put Covers on Sharp Edges
It could be the corner of a worktop or the edge of a cupboard, but whatever it is, you should cover it. You can get worktop edge covers very cheaply online, but even taping an old sock or a bit of towel to the edge can do the trick. It’s a temporary fix, but one that can make a big difference in babyproofing your kitchen.
Even for adults, it can be helpful, we’re all prone to walking into sharp edges, no matter how old we are!
8. Consider a Handle-less Kitchen Design
Anything with a handle is something you can hold onto, and for a child, this poses an immediate danger. They can pull drawers out, open cupboards and more, which when they contain knives or dangerous substances, can be a problem.
A handle-less kitchen design is one that requires more dexterity to use and is less likely to encourage a child to open a door. They also look smoother and are very easy to clean as they are often vinyl or lacquer coated.
Are You Looking for a Child-Safe Kitchen Design?
Speak to the experts at KNB for a free consultation and see how we can help you to create a kitchen that’s both stylish and baby proofed.