Children are naturally curious. They might be playing with their toys in the living room one minute, and then dashing outside to catch butterflies the next. Unless parents are equipped with sensors and gadgets that will detect their children’s movements, it is impossible for parents to keep their sight on their little ones at all times.
What they can do is to prevent accidents and other untoward incidents to happen by childproofing their homes. This is a widely accepted fact in good parenting. Most will give utmost attention to bedrooms and playrooms as these are places that children spend most of their time in.
But similar focus should also be granted to places that they may less frequently visit yet present the same amount of danger or more, such as the basements and the bathrooms. There are many ways to childproof a bathroom. Here are six of them.
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Secure the Bathroom Door
Children, especially those who are not potty-trained yet, cannot be left unsupervised in the bathroom. To limit their access, it is advisable to install a door knob cover. It is available for different styles of knobs, such as the round ones or the lever-style handles.
For a safer option, parents can put a latch, sliding bolt, or a hook and eye as an additional safeguard. They only have to make sure that this is out of their children’s reach. Parents should remember that, while they put their children’s safety first, the adults also need to use the bathroom, so the locking mechanism should be one that is easy for the grown-ups and difficult for the child.
Recognize the Water Hazard
Bathrooms naturally have a lot of water. It is essential in flushing, washing, and bathing. But children are particularly vulnerable when it comes to this because they might accidentally drown or slip. Aside from handlebars, placing slip-resistant mats on the surface area near the bathtub, the toilet, and the shower can mitigate a disaster.
A little water in the toilet can be potentially dangerous to toddlers. When they peer on the bowl, fall over, and there’s no one around to help, they can get stuck and drown. That is why parents should make sure that the cover is always closed or install a toilet bowl lid to keep it down.
Put Chemical-Based Products Away
Children have this tendency to put anything they get their hands on straight into their mouths. Shampoos, soaps, conditioner, body wash, toothpaste, mouthwash, and other chemicals should be kept in a storage cabinet out of children’s reach.
Even medicines and other supplements should be treated the same way. The same goes for cleaning materials that are far more hazardous when taken in. Safety latches and locks are available for storage cabinets and drawers.
Keep the Bathroom Clean
Just because adults do not see the stains or the dirt does not mean the surface areas are clean. Extra measures should be taken to ensure the cleanliness and sanitation of the bathrooms since it is a place in the house that is commonly used several times a day. Toddlers and older children will touch anything and will not think twice before putting their hands in their mouths.
In homes where there are bathrooms in basements, it is difficult for water to flush properly because the toilet is installed below the sewer line, which is why upflush toilets are used. These self-contained units may include a macerator pump, which cuts up waste flushed down the toilet, preventing any instance of clogging. Aside from that, since up-flush toilets rely on electricity, not water pressure, to grind waste, problems with overflowing and bad odor can be avoided.
Keep Appliances Out of Reach
Parents keep their hair dryers, electric razors and shavers, and curling irons in the bathroom. This can be dangerous when left plugged and unattended. Water and electricity are a perilous combination. To make sure of both the adults’ and children’s safety, electrical outlets should be situated far from the wet areas. They can also be sheltered with safety plugs or have safety plates installed to cover the receptacles when they are not used.
Better to Be Safe Than to Be Sorry
Safety measures are important because they prevent and minimize accidents. Although not foolproof, they are better than nothing at all. As a supplementary precaution, parents should also educate their children early on about the dos and don’ts of bathroom habits. Teaching them not to mess with the trash and to clean their hands with soap after doing their business can already make a lot of difference.