5 Safety Rules to Get Your Home Ready for Baby
Let’s be real: Life as a parent can be a bit nerve-wracking. From the first time you lay baby down to sleep to the moment they start crawling and pulling up (😱), keeping them safe and sound is top priority. To help lighten the mental load, we’re sharing our best tips for babyproofing your home from day one, to give you peace of mind during that anxiety-inducing first year (and beyond). Hopefully this safety primer will help you worry a little less, and enjoy life with baby a little more.
The number one area to prep before baby comes home is their sleep space. Whether your little one will be catching Zzz’s in a bedside bassinet or napping in their crib, it’s important to follow these safety requirements:
- The mattress should be flat, firm and fit tightly in the frame.
- There is nothing in baby’s sleep space other than a mattress and fitted sheet—that means no blankets, pillows or cuddly toys until baby is at least 12 months.
- A swaddle or sleep sack is fine so long as they stay on and can’t obstruct baby’s face.
- At night, baby should room with you for at least the first 6 months (as recommended by the AAP).
Even though you should be roommates for a while, there are times baby will be snoozing unsupervised, like daytime naps or when baby’s bedtime is earlier than yours. In these situations, a video monitor can provide some much needed peace of mind (not to mention come in handy once baby finally moves into the nursery). Our pick for a mix of high-tech features and ease of use? The CuboAi Sleep Safety Bundle. This duo includes a smart monitor paired with a sleep sensor pad that stays under the mattress, detecting micro motion in real time. It’s the brainchild of a mom who couldn’t sleep wondering if her baby was safe, a fear that was made worse when she found her son with a bib over his face in his crib. That moment led to partnering with a pediatrician to create a monitor that includes these helpful features:
- Covered face detection and rollover alert
- The non-contact sleep sensor pad (placed under baby’s mattress) picks up on micro motions—like the rise and fall of baby’s chest. If the camera AI confirms baby is in the crib, but the Sleep Sensor Pad detects no micro motion, it will send you an alert.
- Can recognize crying and coughing and send notifications
- Sends sleep analytics to your phone
Our Pick: CuboAi Sleep Safety Bundle, $449; us.getcubo.com
Either before baby comes home or not long after they start rolling, it’s a good idea to scan your home for any large or heavy furniture that’s liable to tip over, breakable objects low to the floor or decor items that seem unstable.
- Anchor tall furniture, dressers, TVs or other tippable pieces to the wall with L-brackets or safety straps.
- Move tall floor lamps behind furniture (like the couch).
- Consider getting rid of anything with glass shelves near the floor, or relocate to a room baby won’t be in often.
- Move furniture away from the crib, so there’s nothing close enough for baby to grab or crawl out on once they’re standing.
If it looks like baby is starting to crawl, that’s the sign to finish up any final babyproofing projects, including installing outlet covers, cabinet locks and baby gates. Here’s a list of what to do once baby is on the move:
- Install outlet covers on all accessible outlets.
- Put cabinet locks on any low kitchen or bathroom cabinets that contain sharp objects, breakable items or chemicals.
- Use stove knob covers (if in reach).
- Move any breakables or sharp items out of reach.
- Install baby gates at top and bottom of stairs.
With so much that’s off limits once baby starts exploring, it’s beneficial to set up a “yes” zone where they can play and roam freely, giving them the space they need to start practicing all of their gross motor skills (read: rolling, sitting, crawling and pulling up). This play area can be as a small as a self-contained play yard or as large as an area of your home you section off with baby gates. If going with the latter, follow these tips:
- Pad low table edges, sharp corners or shelves with foam or silicone bumpers.
- Block off stairs or other off limit areas with baby gates.
- Consider padding hard floors with a foam mat or rug.
- Use your monitor to keep an eye on baby when you need to leave for a quick second. Bonus: CuboAi comes with a mobile stand you can set up in any room of your home, and features “danger zone” detection that can alert you if baby tries to leave their safe space.