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After months of waiting, you have finally welcomed your child into the world. Your main priority now is to keep your little miracle safe. Your baby will be spending a lot of time in the nursery, so it is important to check it over and correct potential hazards. Take a few minutes to evaluate each part of your nursery with these tips in mind:
Windows can pose a threat no matter how high they are above ground. Make sure that windows in the nursery and other parts of your home are secure by:
- Moving furniture away from windows.
- Supervising children in rooms with open windows.
- Not relying on screens to prevent falls.
- Installing a stop that prevents windows from opening further than 4 inches. Most children 5 and younger can fit through a 6-inch opening.
- Installing window guards that cover the lower part of the window.
- Opening double-hung windows from the top only.
NURSERY CRIBS AND BEDS
Crib and bed safety is important to help prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). SIDS is the unexplained death of an infant under age 1. It usually occurs while a baby is sleeping in a crib, which is why it also is known as crib death. While the exact cause of SIDS is unknown, researchers have found ways to help prevent babies dying while in their cribs, such as:
- Placing baby to sleep on his or her back for sleep time until they are 1 year old.
- Not using blankets, bumpers, pillows or stuffed animals.
- Choosing a firm, authentic baby crib mattress.
- Installing safety rails on beds for toddlers.
OTHER NURSERY SAFETY TIPS
Additional safety measures and secure furniture also can make the nursery safer, such as:
- Using a nightlight in child’s bedroom, the bathroom and hallways.
- Installing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors inside the nursery and hallway outside the room.
- Anchoring heavy furniture, such as dressers and book shelves, to the wall to prevent them from falling on children who like to climb.
SAFETY OUTSIDE THE NURSERY
While it is important to keep furniture inside the nursery safe for infants, you also should pay attention to other furniture in your home, including:
- Not leaving a baby unattended on furniture.
- Placing bassinets or car seats on the floor rather than on tables, counters, beds or other furniture.
- Placing bumpers or guards on sharp corners of furniture.
- Avoiding co-sleeping with your infant. Instead, place the crib or bassinet in your room for the first six months. The risk of SIDS increases when a baby sleeps in the same bed as parents, siblings and pets. The baby could suffocate if a parent rolls over in their sleep and covers the baby’s nose and mouth.
Making a few changes to the nursery can help keep your baby safe from harm. These changes may seem small, but they can protect your child from injuries or death.
LEARN MORE ABOUT INFANT AND CHILD SAFETY
Raising children can be challenging. Unique safety concerns can crop up during the changing seasons and holidays. These blogs can teach you more about how to keep your child safe during those times:
- Planning safety into summer activities
- Tips to keep kids safe during winter holidays
- How to keep children safe during Halloween
View additional resources offered by the American Academy of Pediatrics.