By Adeline Woo
Think you’ve “child-proofed” your home? Think again!
Here are 3 surprisingly common things at home that are actually hazardous to your child.
1. Bottles, pacifiers and sippy cups.
Almost all my friends who are moms use pacifiers to keep their babies calm and secure. But these objects can actually be a danger to them, according to an article in the journal Pediatrics. The journal reported these comfort objects having caused cuts, bruises and other injuries serious enough to send 45,398 children under age 3 to the nation’s emergency rooms between 1991 and 2010.
In 86 percent of the cases, the kids were injured when they fell while holding the object. Most of the children studied suffered facial cuts as a result, and about 70 percent were hurt on or near their mouths, the study found. Others suffered soft tissue or dental injuries.
Time to take away that pacifier? That’s easier said than done. A 2011 Canadian study found that 86 percent of children ages 1 to 2 still use sippy cups. And a 2008 study in the United Kingdom found that more than 18 percent of toddlers were still using pacifiers at age 3.
Nonetheless, persistence is the key! I would recommend removing the pacifier when your baby is moving about, to reduce the risk of them falling and getting hurt on their mouths due to the pacifier.
When we child-proof your house, you take care of cabinets, corners, outlets, and toilets. What you probably don’t think about is all the electronics around your house that have batteries in them.
Every three hours a child shows up in a U.S. emergency room with a battery that’s been swallowed or placed in the mouth, ears or noses.
The worst culprits are “button batteries,” which account for almost 85 percent of the ER visits. You find those in everything from electronic devices to toys to remote controls and watches. But just about any batteries are dangerous, both because they’re choking hazards and because their chemicals can actually burn through a child’s esophagus.
Do consider taping battery compartments and keeping them closed, so children can’t get to the batteries inside.
3. Hand Sanitizers
As a first time mom, i used ALOT of hand sanitizer lotion whenever I am handling my baby. Now that my baby is all grown up, I encourage her to use it, too. After all, there are some icky germs out there.
But, alas, this is yet another danger to our children. Why? Because of the active ingredient in hand sanitizers – Alcohol. Yes, it’s the same alcohol that we consume in beverages.
The YouTube world is abuzz with videos of teens drinking hand sanitizers to get high.
“If you drink hand sanitizer, you can consume 62 percent alcohol, you can pass out, you could even die,” says the health teacher at one Kansas school that is warning parents about this epidemic.
In short, whether your child is sixteen months or sixteen years, it’s probably best to keep the hand sanitizer lotions in check.
So there you go, 3 new dangers around the house to add to your list.
Time to start taking a good look around your “child-proofed” house again!