Your toddler will grow and develop so fast and his abilities will change. He will quickly go from walking to running and climbing. Each new ability helps your child learn about her body and his world. You may be explaining to your child why they shouldn’t do something that could cause injury. For example, you may say, “don’t touch, it’s hot”. At this age, your child doesn’t really understand danger and won’t remember “no” while playing and exploring. Parents need to stay one step ahead of their children to help keep them safe. Active supervision is the best way to keep you child safe from falling and other injuries.
Active supervision means:
- watching, listening and paying attention to what your child is doing,
- staying close enough to your child so that that you can take action if needed, and
- anticipating your growing child’s next skills and what this means for safety.
Tips to help keep your child safe
- Install wall-mounted gates at the top of the stairs and pressure-mounted gates at the bottom of the stairs. Once your toddler can open or climb over the gate or is around 2 years of age, remove the gates and teach your child how to use stairs safely using your hand or the handrail. If you can’t remove a gate because of younger children in the home, use a gate without notches or gaps that could be used for climbing.
- Use non-slip decals or a bath mat in the bathtub.
- Children can fall out windows, even through window screens, so keep cribs and other furniture away from windows. Install window guards or window locks which are available from home improvement stores.
- Keep doors to stairwells, basements, bathrooms and balconies closed and latched.
- Dressers, cabinets, TV stands, and ovens should be anchored so they can’t tip over onto your child if he tries to climb on them. Home improvement stores sell brackets and anchors for this purpose.
- Toddlers must wear a helmet if on a tricycle, or in a bike carrier or trailer. It’s the law in Manitoba for people under 19 years of age.
- Remove loose throw rugs or secure to the floor with two-sided tape.
- If you have a balcony:
- Keep entrances to balconies locked when not in use
- Supervise children at all times when on balconies
- Place balcony furniture away from railings. Choose heavy balcony furniture so it that is difficult for children to move
- Choose play equipment that is recommended for your child’s age. Playgrounds often have a sign saying what age the equipment is intended for. Playgrounds should have soft, loose surfacing under play equipment.