Being a mom for the first time is a huge learning curve.
You may be worried about long-term things like a college fund and handling the crazy teenage years.
But, there are a few things you need to take care of right away, like baby proofing and potty training. Don’t start counting your grey hairs yet – these tasks are easier to do than you think.
Here’s the truth about babyproofing your home with ease, and for cheap!
1. Take a Look Around
First things first, ask yourself if you really need to go all-out on all the babyproofing.
You may not have enough room in your budget to get everything you want. You may not even have a valid need for everything you want.
The truth about babyproofing is that it’s not so much about making sure every inch of the house is perfectly safe.
It’s more about having a bit of common sense, a watchful eye, and peace of mind.
Yes, this means you can keep your coffee table and you don’t have to turn your beautiful home into baby land.
Start with the basics, then go from there.
2. Pay Close Attention to the Crib
One of the most important tools to ensure your baby is safe and comfortable is a crib.
The top things to keep in mind are the size of the railings and the quality of the materials used.
Railings have a specific set of dimensions meant to keep your baby from poking through the gaps.
But, there might still be some with drop sides or wide railings out there. If you’re using your sister’s baby’s old crib or buying one from a secondhand store, be sure it’s a safe choice.
Another thing to watch out for is the paint and wood used.
When your baby is transitioning from a few months old to a toddler, he or she will become increasingly curious. They will try to bite at the railings or edges, and you don’t want toxic materials ending up in their mouth!
Once you decide on a crib, try not to overdo it with the stuffed animals.
In fact, you should be as minimal as possible when setting up the mattress and blankets. This will prevent your baby from overheating or suffocation.
You may choose to set up the crib in your room or in a separate room.
Either way, get a baby radio to monitor the baby’s sleep.
This can help you track their breathing and some will even watch out for carbon monoxide. You can look into alarm system tips to learn more.
3. Watch Out for Wires and Outlets
Although babies spend a lot of their days sleeping in the crib or taking naps around other safe spaces in the house, they’ll be crawling around at some point.
Make sure your child doesn’t get into any trouble with electric devices.
A pack of outlet covers can go a long way.
It is such a simple, and fairly cheap, investment that can save you a lot of stress. Most parents even say covers are a no-brainer because most outlets are at a baby’s eye-level.
Additionally, try to tuck TV or computer wires behind their stands if you can.
This is the most efficient way to save on extra babyproofing items. Instead of buying more gates than necessary or special hooks, you may just need to move some furniture around!
Such thinking saves you money and stress while keeping your babyproof home looking fabulous.
4. Protect Entryways
Do you have a two-story home? Is your apartment set up with a pretty open floor plan?
If so, you’re going to need something more than couch cushions to keep your baby safe. But, you don’t have to gate up every room in the house.
One gate will do for the stairs. Take it with you to block the bottom when you’re downstairs, and then move it to the top when you go upstairs.
For open spaces, use your best judgment.
If you’re in the kitchen and your baby is within eyesight in the dining room, set up a barrier where they won’t go too far.
This doesn’t mean locking them in, though. It can be as simple as buying a play pin you can move around the home. This one tool is fun for the baby and makes safety much easier for you.
You can set it up nearby whether you’re cooking dinner or getting some work done in your home office.
5. Be Careful During Feeding Time
Many parents will focus on household hazards when they discuss the truth about babyproofing.
Yet, some people forget to educate you on good practices for your baby’s meals.
Avoid heating food up in the microwave.
Microwaves can cause hot spots on some parts of the dish that will burn the baby’s mouth. Instead, heat food up in a bowl of warm water – kind of like you would with a double boiler.
Test the heat of solids by tasting with a separate spoon (no double-dipping). For liquids like formula or breast milk, splash a few drops on your hand to get a feel for the temperature.
Always wash your hands when you’re doing any kind of cooking for your baby.
Their immune system is much weaker than yours, leaving them at a higher risk of germs which your body may not even notice.
This is also why most parents advise a slow transition into solid foods.
When you introduce things one at a time, you’re better prepared to catch allergic reactions. These include hives or a rash, diarrhea, or vomiting.
Sharing the Truth About Babyproofing
As much as you want to be a well-prepared momma, don’t forget to let dad in on the truth about babyproofing.
Communicate with your partner about all the efforts you’re doing to create a safe environment for your baby. Establish a set of rules and expectations for one another as you take on parenting together.
If your husband is particularly nervous about how he will do (or is doing so far) as a father, try making him a dad survival kit!
Click here to see how simple and fun kit-making can be.