Safety tips for babies and toddlers you need to know
It doesn't matter if you're a first-time mum or you're taking care of a big, growing family, you never stop being amazed by the curiosity of babies and toddlers.
Somehow they always find new and unexpected things in the house to explore and experiment with.
But that means they can uncover new dangers too. Things you thought were perfectly safe or that an older child had left alone can become a hazard to an inquisitive youngster.
That means it always pays to refresh your knowledge about the risks to children that can be hidden around the home, so you can take steps to keep them safe.
Whether you're child-proofing your house for the first time, or you're a mum getting ready for a growing family, take a look at some of the potential risks – and how to fix them.
What's the risk? Scalding water. From spilled drinks to a kettle getting pulled off the counter, hot water can burn a child's sensitive skin up to 15 minutes after it's boiled.
How to fix it: never hold a child and a hot drink at the same time. Invest in a cordless kettle and keep it away from the edge of the counter. When heating pans on the hob, use the rear burners and keep the handles turned away from the front.
What's the risk? Laundry capsules. We love them because there's no more fussing around with measuring cups. But babies love them too, and for the wrong reasons – they can mistake the colourful capsules for sweets or toys.
The living room
What's the risk? The TV. Today's TVs are bigger than ever, with a narrower base. So they're more likely to fall if a toddler tries to clamber up them. And with their size and weight, they're a real danger.
How to fix it: choosing to mount your TV on the wall with a sturdy fixed bracket is a great way to ensure a perfect viewing position – and to make sure that a curious child can't bring it crashing down.
What's the risk? Lamps – with electricity, heat and glass all in one easy-to-pull-over package, it's no wonder that lamps are a significant safety hazard if you don't take steps to protect them.
How to fix it: look for lamps with a sturdy base that aren't easy to knock over, and materials that won't break easily. Tape the cords down so they can't be pulled over and place them as far back on the table as you can so they're out of reach.
What's the risk? Chests of drawers or wardrobes. To a child's eye, a chest of drawers might have been designed as a climbing frame. But when they try to clamber up it, they can cause furniture to topple forward onto them.
How to fix it: tall, heavy furniture should be secured to the wall, so that it can't be pulled over. If the furniture didn't come with anchor straps, you can buy them separately. Try to also avoid placing heavy items in high places.
What's the risk? Window-blind cords. They may be a stylish alternative to curtains, but the looped cords on window blinds can entangle and choke a small child.
How to fix it: blinds without a cord are widely available now – install these, especially in children's bedrooms, so you can all sleep more easily. If you have cords that you can't remove, keep them short and tie them up, away from the cot.
* Like any household product, keep Ariel 3in1 Pods and Fairy Non Bio washing capsules away from children.
What unexpected hazards did you spot in your home? Let us know your tips for staying safe in the comments below.