If I were to ask you to name a home safety devices for children off the top of your head, you’d most likely come up with outlet covers, safety gates, or cabinet locks. These gadgets, along with so many others, are commonplace in most homes with small children. However, there are a few safety tools that are overlooked time and again — and unfortunately their absence has led to injuries, illness, and in some cases, death. Here are 4 home safety features you may be forgetting.
Hot tap water accounts for 17% of all childhood scald hospitalizations. Experts recommend that parents set the temperature on their hot water heater below 120 degrees in order to keep small children from burning themselves when bathing or washing their hands.
However, for those of use with older hot water heaters, that simply isn’t an option. Thankfully, anti-scald devices installed on faucets and showerheads serve much the same purpose. Anti-scald valves use water pressure or temperature to regulate hot water flow, but the best use a combination of the two methods.
Garage Door Motion Sensor
In 1991, I watched an episode of Rescue 911 where a child went into cardiac arrest after becoming pinned under a garage door. She had raced to beat the door before it came down (like so many of us have) and unfortunately, the garage door won. Luckily, she survived the ordeal — but not all children do.
John Morris of Gold Label Door explains, “A typical garage door weighs over 200 pounds or more depending on style and type. Motion sensors stop garage doors from going down. This is an important safety feature when homeowners have young kids and animals at the home.”
Kid Safe Pest Control Measures
Ants, spiders, and other seasonal pests can be both a nuisance and a danger. However, the danger posed by the bugs themselves is nothing compared to the poisons we use to destroy them. Children are curious creatures and tend to put things in their mouths — including ant bait and traps. To avoid both insect infestations and a call to poison control, the trick is to keep the pests from getting in the house to begin with.
Install door sweeps at the base of all exterior entry doors, fit garage doors with a bottom seal, and fill utility openings in the foundation and siding with expandable foam. Not only will this keep six and eight legged intruders from making your house their new home, it will also increase the energy efficiency of your heating and cooling system. Double win!
I know you’re wondering how a meat thermometer made this list, but hang in there.
While E. coli and salmonella can make an adult seriously ill, it can overpower a child’s delicate system and potentially result in kidney failure. Cooking meat to a safe internal temperature is the first defense in protecting your children from these nasty bacteria.
Unfortunately, most people don’t own a meat thermometer which is the only way to test your meat to ensure it is heated thoroughly. Furthermore, you can’t count on color to indicate doneness as research has found that a sufficient number of ground beef patties turn brown well before they reach 160 degrees.
You can get a meat thermometer for as low as $3, which is a hell of a low price to protect your family.
No one wants to spend their whole life thinking about all the things that could possibly go wrong. Life is too short to live in fear, but taking just a few moments to consider household dangers can avoid a world of hurt.