Here are some tips on how to baby proof your house.
Baby proof during the first few months when the baby is still in its bouncer and hasn't begun crawling yet.
Remove breakables and sharp objects from accessible places.
Bookshelves should be firmly secured to the wall so they don't topple if baby pulls on them.
Detergents and other chemicals should be placed on high shelves.
You can buy baby proof fasteners for cupboards from your hardware store, or a simple elastic band will suffice.
Stairs should be stairguarded. These guards are also useful for keeping baby out of certain rooms.
You can even buy a guard for your video recorder to help keep baby's fingers and any other objects out of it.
For electrical safety you can buy push-in socket protectors for point that are not in use, including power boards. Best of all you should replace all power points in the home with safety power points. They look the same as other power points but have safety devices inside to stop children from sticking things into the holes. Get an electrician to install an earth leakage detector in your home. This can save lives.
When safeguarding your kitchen don't forget to allocate a low cupboard or drawer for baby. You can put any plastics, unbreakables and baby's own plates here. Baby will love rummaging through and later even choosing his/her own plates.
If your baby is under 12 months attachments to the cot such as mobiles/mosquito nets should be placed out of babies grasp as he/she can easily get tangled up.
When baby is crawling and starts to pull up on the table legs, it is time to take off the table cloth.
Nappy buckets should have securely fastened lids. Babies have drowned by pulling themselves into buckets.
Place a non-slip plastic bath mat in the bath so baby doesn't slip. Never leave the baby unattended in the bath for even a second no matter how shallow the water.
Never leave a baby sitting unattended in an upright portable chair.
Never put a bouncer/rocker in a high position like a bench top. Even if harnessed a baby can suddenly lean forward, tip the chair off balance and fall to the floor.
Never leave hot drinks near the edge of a bench top or table. Never carry a hot drink when carrying baby.
Don't leave saucepan handles poking out from the stove.
Don't carry baby too near a hot stove or kettle. It is amazing how suddenly and strongly a baby can lunge from your arms and make sure your toddler is safe inside when you are mowing or driving into the garage.
Babyproofing the backyard is a different story but watch out for pellet fertilisers and snail baits and have a lock on the shed where you keep your garden tools and chemicals.
Fish ponds, no matter how shallow should be covered with mesh and finally enrol in a baby First Aid course. Brush up on these courses every year especially between the toddler and pre-school years. You may never forgive yourself if an accident happens and you didn't know how best to help your child.