Account & More
Ivy Jacobson
Associate Editor, The Knot

How To Make Sure Your Baby Gate Is Actually Safe

Learn why your baby gate may in fact be dangerous—and how to prevent accidents.

Baby safety gates are supposed to keep your little ones out of harm's way, but a surprising new study published in American Pediatrics says that the gates actually send 2,000 children to the ER every year. Even though the injuries resulting from falling through or climbing over the gate weren't life-threatening, it may be time to re-evaluate the gear in your own home.

To ensure safety, hardware-mounted gates are sturdy and anchored to the walls with screws or brackets, which means they’re extra-secure and won’t budge if knocked into.

For that reason, use this type of gate in places where an injury could happen, like at the top of the stairs or where floors are uneven.

Baby gates come in a variety of metal, wood and plastic, but metal ones are the strongest and should be your go-to choice for spots where you need extra protection (again, at the top of the stairs).

Also, make sure that whatever gate you choose has been certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (there should be a JPMA sticker on the package). This means the manufacturer has met the association’s voluntary safety standards.

Lead researcher Lara McKenzie and her team at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, studied the effect of baby gate injuries on children up to six-years-old.

Has a baby gate ever injured your baby?

PHOTO: Getty Images
Related Video