How to Child-Proof Your Bathroom
For small children, the bathroom can be a place that looks ripe for exploration. There are a lot of things in this area of your home that they don’t see anywhere else in the house. Since it is not a room they frequently visit, it sometimes holds a sense of wonder for them. Whether you are thinking of your shower stalls or the medicine cabinet, there are many ways you can child-proof your bathroom to make it safer for curious and clumsy little ones.
Unless your child is potty trained, there is no reason for him or her to be in the bathroom alone. Install doorknob covers that make it difficult for children to turn the handle. You can also put a hook and eye or sliding bolt lock near the top of the outside of the door so they can’t get in even if they could turn the handle. On the other hand, you may want to disable the locks on the inside of the door just in case your child does get inside the bathroom.
Install Cabinet Locks
Be sure to keep all medications out of the reach of children and limit their ability to access them if they find a way to reach them. A locked medicine cabinet can be helpful, but, if you can’t lock it, at least use child-proof tabs that make doors difficult to open. Keep all medications and ingestible items in this cabinet, from vitamins and prescription pills to mouthwash.
Never leave a child alone to bathe. Drowning is just one of the concerns of a child alone in a bathtub. Heat is another. Turn your water heater down to about 120 degrees, or install an anti-scald device. For extra safety, use a rubber ducky that changes colors when the bath water is too hot. It also pays to install anti-slip decals or a mat in the tub so the child has an easier time staying in one place. Cover the faucet with a rubber or inflatable faucet cover so the child doesn’t hit their head on the faucet if they do fall.
Before you had a child, you had a lot of habits that you had to change after welcoming a new person into your lives. Here is one more. Do not leave anything plugged in in the bathroom, and install outlet covers. These covers should be installed on all of the outlets in your house, but the bathroom may be one of the most important places. The combination of electrical items and water can be fatal, and your child simply doesn’t know any better.
It’s also time to stop leaving the bathroom door open when you run a bath. You deserve some time out to take a long hot soak, but it only takes a few minutes for a child to wander in and fall into the tub as they look over the edge. In fact, if you are considering remodeling, it might be a good time to replace that bathtub with a shower stall as well!