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Unexpected household dangers: the five Bs

Home & Family   |   Age: 4 months


Unexpected household dangers: the five Bs

Believe it or not, even some of the products marketed specifically towards your baby can cause just as much trouble as obvious dangers, so it's important to separate the safe from the unsafe. And get this - all of the items in this particular unsafe list start with "B."

Baby walkers:

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, a walker will not actually help your baby learn to walk, and actually might slow down her progress. More than that, they can allow your baby to move at a higher speed than she is developmentally ready for yet, and has been known to lead babies into trouble falling over, tripping over door jambs, or pulling objects off of higher surfaces than they can reach on their own yet. Even if you’re watching your baby, if she is moving faster than you’re used to, you might not be able to keep up with the trouble she can get into.

Broken pieces:

Even if a toy is perfectly safe for your baby in its recommended state, accidents happen. If a piece of a toy comes off as a casualty to a tantrum, or gets stepped on in the dark, jagged edges could pose a safety risk. If the piece is smaller than the width of a toilet paper roll, it could be a choking hazard.

Balloons:

Latex balloons can be a safety hazard whether they’re blown up or deflated. Deflated balloons can be choked on or inhaled, and inflated ones can be popped with just a little application of a sharp new tooth, breaking them into shredded pieces that are also choking or suffocation hazards. Mylar balloons (the ones that look like giant, shiny pillows) can be a good alternative as party decorations when your baby is young, as long as they are disposed of properly, as the Energy Education Council warns that mylar balloons that make a break for freedom have been known to get caught in power lines and cause power outages.

Bottles, pacifiers and sippy cups:

These products aren’t dangerous in and of themselves, but they can start to get that way as your baby becomes more mobile. According to a study conducted at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in 2012, bottles, pacifiers and sippy cups cause thousands of injuries requiring hospital visits every year, mostly in the form of falls when children were walking or running while using these items. These injuries can be limited by only using these products when your baby is sitting down, and by introducing cups without lids around the time she turns a year old.

Blinds:

Seemingly innocent, blinds, and especially the cords hanging off of them, can actually pose a serious risk for children. You can warn your baby all you want, but young children aren't always skilled at following the rules, so it can be helpful to get cordless blinds for the windows in your home.


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