Make safety a priority when it comes to your children with these simple steps.

Make safety a priority when it comes to your children with these simple steps.

Install safety locks. That blue liquid you use to clean the windows looks like a delicious blueberry beverage to toddlers. Make sure any cabinet that contains potentially harmful chemicals or other items is unopenable. Also, make sure medicines are kept well out of reach of the little ones.

Cut up food. Nothing ruins a dinner faster than your kid choking on a hot dog. Make sure all kid food is served in un-chokable sizes. Choking is also more likely to occur when kids are running around while eating. Put them in a chair and don’t let them leave until they’re done.

Inspect equipment. Items such as bikes and scooters should be inspected regularly to make sure they function properly. Inspections aren’t limited to ride-ables. Be sure to check out sports equipment, trampolines and other items that could lead to a trip to the emergency room if not maintained properly.

Teach water safety. If you have a swimming pool, make sure it’s fenced in and that the gate is always locked. Never let a young kid swim unsupervised, even if it’s just for a few seconds. As soon as children are old enough, enroll them in a basic swim course.

Install car seats properly. When riding in the car, kids are required by law to sit in a car seat. Make sure the car seat is installed properly.

Put up the gate. Kids are not familiar with the concept of gravity. In this case, experience is not the best teacher. Install safety gates at the top or bottom of stairs. Make sure your kids can’t bust through them or climb over them, which would, ironically, make the stairs more dangerous.

Wear helmets. Safe Kids USA encourages children to always wear helmets when riding bikes, scooters, skateboards or other wheeled objects. In some cases, kneepads, elbow pads and shin guards may be appropriate.
Teach kids how to use the phone. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children recommends you teach your children how to use the phone and that you teach them whom to call in case of emergency. The most obvious number is 9-1-1. They should also know your phone number and how to dial it, in case of emergency.

Keep kids away from the heat. Little kids love to touch stoves, hot irons and fire, and although it only takes one negative experience to cure them of this love, one experience is one too many. Make the cooking area a no-kids zone and always check bathwater temperature before setting children in the tub.

Cover those sockets. Kid sees small metal object. Kid sees uncovered electrical socket. Kid thinks small metal object belongs in electrical socket. Kid gets shocked. Kid cries (or worse). Fork gets ruined. Mom has a heart attack. This can all be avoided by covering unused electrical outlets.