The weight of responsibility parents feel as their children grow up never really goes away, but it is at its strongest during those early years. As the world grows more volatile each year, keeping children safe is top of every parent’s priority list. Each year, roughly 1000 children are abducted in England alone; this figure does not include home invasion or abduction attempts (Statista, 2021). Children face many threats from outside the home; indoor accidents can also happen.
Roughly 67,000 children each year experience a minor to a severe accident in the kitchen, 43,000 of whom are under the age of 5. Even the most baby-proofed home can still be a dangerous environment for a young child who hasn’t quite found their feet yet. 58,000 children a year also have accidents on stairs, as they are very easy to tumble down. Whilst some accidents are unavoidable, what steps can we take to make the lives of children a little bit safer?
Being prepared for emergencies
If you are out of the home and your child needs help, they must know how to contact emergency services, parents or a relative close by. Ensure your child knows how to use the home phone when they are old enough to be left unsupervised, leaving a note of emergency numbers in a visible place, like on the fridge. Every home also needs a first aid kit if a trip, fall, or bruise occurs.
Know the hazards in your home
Being aware of the hazards in your home can also help mitigate possible threats to your child. Look for safety hazards from your child's viewpoint; it may be harder to spot possible danger points being twice a child's height. Don’t be afraid to get down on your knees and examine your home! There are also simple checks you can perform, try:
- Removing electrical cords which run under your carpet.
- If you must keep a firearm, keep it in a locked, hidden safe, storing bullets separately.
- Ensure your smoke alarms are in working order.
- Use plug protectors and baby-proof padding on sharp corners of tables.
- Be aware of choking hazards, like small toys or plastic bags, left around your home.
Consider installing Security Cameras
If you are serious about protecting your child, consider purchasing security cameras for your home. Security cameras allow remote viewing 24/7, meaning your child is never truly left alone. Even if your child is too young to be home alone and receives child care during the day, being able to check up on your child can give parents much-needed peace of mind. Most modern security cameras with wifi and 4G connectivity allow for a clearer picture in colour. This allows you to clearly see what your child is up to, which is helpful, especially when monitoring toddlers. Even when present in the home, in-home cameras can act as a baby monitor, ensuring you can be there if a child needs your help or is distressed.