Prenatal Articles

Baby-Proofing Your Nursery

Bookcases, armoires, chest of drawers, change tables and all large pieces of furniture should be anchored to the wall to prevent them from tipping over and falling on top of baby.

DO NOT hang artwork or shelves above the crib or change table.

If you are using a nightlight make sure that it remains cool to the touch.

Put baby to sleep on his back on a firm, snug fitting mattress with no soft bedding.

Use plug covers on all unused electrical outlets.

Crib Safety:

– Check that your crib meets all crib safety requirements.

– Should have no decorative cut outs or corner posts.

– Check often to make sure the frame is solid and screws, nuts, bolts and all hardware are securely tightened.

– Make sure the mattress is a tight fit against all four sides of the crib.

– When the baby can sit up move the mattress down to its lowest level and remove all crib gyms, mobiles, hanging toys and decorations.

– Slats should not be more than six cm (2 3/8 inches) apart and should not be loose or turn when twisted.

– Your crib should have a label on it that shows when the crib was made and who the manufacturer is.

– Wood should be smooth and free of splinters.

– Health Canada recommends that soft mattresses, pillows, comforters, stuffed toys and bumper pads not be used in cribs. Once your baby can climb out – stop using the crib!

– Position your baby’s crib/bed away from all windows, lamps and electrical plugs. Drapes, blinds and blind cords should be kept out of baby’s reach and safely away from all sources of heat. Use a cord wind-up device or secure a bracket to the wall to wind the cord around it. Baby’s can strangle themselves with long loose blind cords.
– Windows should be securely locked. All window locks/latches should be out of baby’s reach. Install window guards if necessary.
– DO NOT use wicker furniture or wicker baskets – pieces can become loose and baby can choke on them.
– Your change table should have three raised sides. Never leave your baby unattended on the change table and always use the safety belt when changing your baby.
– Keep baby powder, cotton balls and other supplies out of baby’s reach.
– Keep floor clear of tripping hazards like throw rugs and electric cords.
– Make sure you have a child-safe toy box i.e. hinges with safety stops or a removable lid and ventilation – just in case baby climbs in and can’t get out.
– Install a doorstop to prevent fingers from getting pinched in the door. Make sure the doorstop is just one piece and made of rubber, do not use the more common metal spring doorstop with a rubber tip – these tips can be easily removed and pose a choking hazard.

Once your baby is able to walk and climb, take a look at the nursery through their eyes. If they can climb something and if it can lead to a potentially dangerous situation, remove it or relocate it. For example, if they like to sleep in their crib with a giant baby-safe bear…consider that they can use this lovely bear as a stepping stool to climb out of the crib.