How to baby-proof your home for the holidays

Little ones are curious – especially at Christmastime. With so many lights and bows, they’ll want to explore. A few precautions can keep the decorations – and your child – safe throughout the season.

  • Anchor the tree to the wall. Most young children like to climb, and a Christmas tree always looks like fun. Make sure it’s securely anchored to prevent it from tipping. Another option is to place a “fence” around the tree (similar to a series of baby gates) to keep the kids from getting too close.
  • Use nonbreakable ornaments. Shattered glass ornaments can cause injuries, not to mention be a pain to clean up. Plastic is the better choice for the first few years.
  • Use artificial candles and lights. Flames are dangerous when a child is around. Investing in electric lights and battery-powered candles keeps your home festive and safe.
  • Don’t set presents under the tree. Your baby will want to open gifts, which can be dangerous if he or she gets into Aunt Lisa’s new set of kitchen knives. Keeping gifts hidden eliminates the danger. Plus, your child will be thrilled to see what Santa left on Christmas morning.
  • Use fake plants. Mistletoe, holly and poinsettias are Christmas staples, but they’re also poisonous when eaten. Fake alternatives are still festive, but without the danger.
  • Pay extra attention while cooking. Between hot pans and sharp utensils, the kitchen is a danger zone during holiday get-togethers. Keep a close eye on your child, so he or she doesn’t grab something unsafe.

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