Home Security Tips To Keep Your Family Safe – Part 3 of 3
More on home safety tips, we covering keeping safe from fires, burns and falls. In this article, we will be looking at preventing poisonings, choking, suffocation’s, drownings and disaster preparedness.
Poisonings are more common with little children and especially babies that are just starting to crawl and walk. These tiny people have a great sense of curiosity, but have no idea what can be bad for them. This is also the stage where they put just about everything and anything into their mouths. Because of this, you need to childproof your house, removing anything that can be poisonous to the child. Remove cleaners and beauty products from under counters and get them high enough where the child can’t reach it. It’s absolutely inconvenient to do this, but there is no other sure way to keep these away from kids. You can use cabinet locks, but any parent will tell you that most kids can defeat these and get into the cabinet anyway. Despite this, you should still use child safety locks on cabinets and drawers that contain items that kids shouldn’t get into. Once you have removed the poisons from their reach, there are still plenty of things you don’t want kids getting into. Sometimes, having these locks, can simply prevent children from pulling out everything and making a mess.
If a child of someone has ingested a poison, or even if you think or suspect they might have done so, call Poison Control immediately at 1-800-222-1222. Don’t waste time trying to figure out whether or not the person has been exposed, call immediately and they will will help you make that determination. Follow the directions from Poison Control and call 9-1-1 immediately if someone needs to go to the hospital.
Everyone from newborns to the elderly can choke, and you should know not only how to prevent choking, but also how to help someone if they do get something lodged in their throat. Infants and toddlers are especially vulnerable due to their small throats, and their propensity to stick things in their mouth. Older people increase their chances of choking when they speak while eating.
As a parent, you need to know that anything that can fit through the cardboard tube of a roll of toilet paper can cause a child to choke. Keep these small things away from children at all times, including coins, balloons, nuts, board game pieces and candy. For children that eat regular table food, make sure you cut their food up small enough for them to easily chew and swallow it. Parents often make the mistake in thinking that simply because the child is older that they don’t need their food cut up. This sort of mistake is the cause for many children to choke.
Babies need to be on their backs when they sleep in the crib. Keep pillows, blankets, comforters and toys out of the crib and out of reach from babies in the crib. These can cause suffocation if the child were to move it over their head. Never use any plastic to line a crib, the risk of suffocation is far too great. Babies aren’t fragile, but they need extra care to make sure that we keep all potential dangers away from them as they grow up.
It’s more common in communities that have backyard pools, but drownings can happen anywhere. Always watch your children around water and stay close enough to them so that you can reach out and grab them if needed. Don’t get distracted, even for a second. This advice goes for all water: pools, buckets, bathtubs, toilets, spas, etc. It only takes about an inch of water for a baby to drown in and their top-heaviness makes them prone to falling in containers like buckets, tubs and toilets.
Over the past few years, we have seen a tremendous increase in the occurrence of natural and man-made disasters. Just think about the damage from things like massive earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes and flooding that we have experienced. It is good sense to be prepared for the unexpected and make sure that your family can remain safe. In addition to a fire escape plan, you also need to have a communication plan. When a disaster hits, the phone lines get jammed and it’s difficult to call anyone. There are two things that have a higher chance of working and that is calling long distance and texting.
Since it’s usually the local circuits that are jammed up, you can often make a call outside of the effected area. Because of this, it’s a good idea that everyone has the number of a trusted friend or family member that lives at least one state away. Let everyone know that if needed, they can call that number and leave a message about their status. The person that is out of the area acts as a sort of human bulletin board, relaying messages when they call in. Text messages are sent over the call phone company’s “admin” circuit and doesn’t rely on phone lines. Because of this, it’s more likely that text messages will get through.
Put together an evacuation kit for each member of your family. This kit should include items that you will need to stay alive for at least three days and preferably 1 week or more. You’ll need items like food, water, shelter, blankets or sleeping bags, flashlights, radios, spare batteries, first aid kit, dust mask, whistle, matches or lighter and any prescription medications that you need. Your evacuation kit will also be useful in the event of a terrorist attack. If you add cold weather gear like hats, scarves, gloves and warm coats, this can also serve as your winter weather kit.
These home safety tips aren’t glamorous and not as much fun as many other things that you could be doing, but setting about making sure you and your family are safe should be your number one priority. Because of our modern culture, we often overlook safety as something that we need to do, but it’s one of the most important things you can do for your loved ones.