Your baby will grow and develop so much in the first year. Her abilities will change quickly. As your child grows and learns to roll, crawl, pull up, stand and walk, some falling over is normal. But falls from heights can result in an injury and that is what we want to prevent. Parents can stay one step ahead of their children to help keep them safe.
Active supervision is the best way to keep your 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 from falling
- It’s never too early to be careful. Some babies can roll over at a month old.
- Never leave your baby unattended and always keep a hand on her when she is on a change table, sofa, adult bed or other raised surface.
- Choose a change table with guard rail and safety straps. Keep all your diaper changing supplies within reach so you don’t have to turn away. If the phone or doorbell rings during the diaper change, take your baby with you or ignore it
- Before your baby can push up on her hands and knees, lower the crib mattress to prevent her from falling out of the crib.
- Once your baby starts to crawl, install wall-mounted gates at the top of the stairs and pressure-mounted gates at the bottom of the stairs.
- Move furniture including the cribs away from windows. Install window guards or window locks which are available from home improvement stores.
- Children can fall out windows, even through screens, so keep cribs and other furniture away from windows. Install window guards or window locks which are available from home improvement stores.
- Use non-slip decals or a bath mat in the bathtub. Never use a bath ring
Baby equipment and falls
- For all child products, always follow manufacturer’s recommendations such as assembly, use, age, height and weight limits
- Bouncy chair, baby carrier or car seat – Place the baby seat or carrier on the floor and not a table, counter or other raised surface. Babies rock, twist, reach and move which can cause them to fall out or can cause the seat or carrier to fall off of a raised surface
- High chairs, strollers, swings, change tables, shopping carts and kitchen booster seats – Always use the product’s harness or safety straps .Babies can squirm, wriggle and climb out of these products, which can cause a fall or the baby to become tangled in the product.
- Cribs – Lower the crib mattress before baby can push up on her hands and knees to prevent from her from falling out of the crib. Also, do not use pillows, toys and bumper pads in the crib as they are unsafe for sleeping and your baby could use them to climb out of the crib
- Playpens – Avoid placing large or stuffed toys in the playpen. Babies could climb on them and fall out of the playpen.
Wheeled baby walker– Babies have died or become seriously injured falling down stairs in walkers. Wheeled walkers are banned in Canada and cannot be sold. If you have an old, wheeled baby walker, take the wheels off before you throw it away so that someone else doesn’t use it. Choose stationary exercise stations instead.