Baby Safety Tips That All New Parents Must Know

by | Dec 30, 2019

Babies and toddlers aren’t old enough to understand the things that could cause them harm. Therefore, the most vital role that we have in our children’s lives is to protect and keep them safe.

There are plenty of dangers out there that our little ones are not aware of. Dangers that they may be able to protect themselves from or ones that they rely on you for.

Below are the basic and most important tips that will keep your baby safe, whether it be at home or out. From safety proofing your house from a curious crawler to teaching vital life lessons to your naive toddler, all of these topics are very important to know.

If I teach a new parent one safety tip for their baby, then my job here is done!

Important safety tips that all parents should know when raising a baby or toddler to keep them safe and protected at home, in the car, bath, sleep, and mealtime.

Safe sleeping

The Safe to Sleep® campaign focuses on actions that caregivers can take to help your baby sleep safely and to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and suffocation.

There are a number of ways you can lower his or her risk of these unthinkable instances while giving your baby the best care possible. Be sure to follow these tips to make sure your baby is safe while sleeping.

  • Your infant should sleep on a Firm Mattress; softer mattresses can be used when your child is over 2.
  • Don’t put your infant on their belly to sleep until they are old enough to turn their head and roll into this position themselves.
  • There should be no other objects in the crib or bassinet with baby, especially no blankets, pillows, or loose bedding.
  • Have your little one in tighter fitting garments to sleep.
  • Try not to co-sleep with an infant in bed with you.
  • Don’t leave your baby napping unattended while in baby gear (swing, bouncer, or inclined surface), especially once they are rolling age.
  • Don’t keep your baby sleeping in a car seat if they are not in a car. The reclined position produced by the base makes it safe for the baby to sleep in the car. However, the position that their head can drop when not in the base can cause airway blockage resulting in death.
  • There are monitors that detect your baby’s heart rate, movement, and breathing while they sleep. They’re not necessary but may help to give you peace of mind.
  • Using a pacifier for your newborn is shown to help prevent SIDs.

Related Post: Establishing Healthy Sleep Habits for Your Baby

Safe home

A house has many more dangers than you probably initially think of when it comes to little ones. There are potential hazards all over that you could overlook, but your baby will always find.

The tips below will help you get your home set up in a safe way so there are no risks for your baby or toddler.

  • Tie up curtains and window blind’s cords
  • Keep detergents, harmful chemicals, and medications out of reach, in a locked cabinet, or out of reach of young children.
  • Place crib away from other items like window or outlets where baby could reach through the bars with their hands.
  • Foam mats for hardwood floors
  • Don’t leave anything hanging close to the edge of a table
  • Magnetic locks or hair ties to lock cabinets
  • Stove knob covers
  • Don’t keep cords hanging out of outlets
  • Outlet covers
  • Safety Gate at top and bottom of stairs
  • Put alarms, bells, or any noise device on doors leading to outside.
  • Remove anything heavy or breakable from surfaces at or below waist level
  • Plastic corners for low table edges
  • Block off fireplace
  • Use doorknob covers
  • Place pillows around crib when toddler is standing in case of climbing out
  • Use a new (not used) crib. They always update safety regulations so after a crib has been used, don’t repurpose it.

Read plenty more details on How to Baby and Toddler Proof Your Entire Home

Safe feeding

Early feeding was always a little nerve-wracking for me. I feared of choking all the time when first attempting solids.

I would give the tiniest pieces of food and watch my baby with a steady eye the whole time. I would always get worried that I wouldn’t know what to do if an event like that would happen.

  • Never leave your infant or early toddler unattended during mealtimes. It only takes a second to choke so make sure you are paying close attention.
  • Become certified in CPR or at the least, watch CPR and choking videos on Youtube so you are familiar with what would need to be done in case.
  • Keep a LifeVac in your kitchen. The LifeVac is a small, suction device that can easily remove a choking object from your toddler’s airway. I hope to never have to use mine, but I feel safe knowing that I have one.
  • Never give any foods WHOLE that are potential choking hazards (grapes, hot dogs, nuts, popcorn, chunks of peanut butter, hard candy, raw veggies). If you do, make sure they are cut very small and thin.
  • Introduce one high allergen food at a time to determine if there is a reaction
  • Keep Benadryl on hand in your pantry in case of allergic reaction

Safe bathing

The bath tub can be a dangerous place if you’re not aware of the potential hazards. Here are some things to take note of:

  • Never leave standing water in the tub when your child could be unattended around it
  • Don’t leave baby alone in the bath, even for a few seconds
  • Use a nonskid mat for the tub once they are no longer in their infant tub
  • Dispose of squeezable bath toys after a couple of months due to possible mold contamination.
  • Use a faucet cover in tub
  • Never leave electrical items (hair dryer, electric toothbrush, etc.) near a tub that your little one could pull a cord into the water.

Sun protection

Make sure your babies and toddlers stay protected from the sun’s harmful rays, as well as the heat.

  • Put a wide brimmed hat on your baby
  • Keep them hydrated constantly when the weather is warm
  • Use Safe Sunscreen (ThinkBaby)
  • Avoid high noon hours when sun is strongest: 10am2pm
  • Keep all skin and body protected. Wear a rash guard, dress baby cool, and use muslin blankets
  • Keep baby in shade or under an umbrella or canopy
  • Check expiration dates on sunscreeens

For more detailed information, read 11 Tips for Being Outside With a Baby

Car safety

Important safety tips that all parents should know when raising a baby or toddler to keep them safe and protected at home, in the car, bath, and mealtime.

That first ride home from the hospital or birthing center with your new little nugget is an anxiety-ridden drive to say the least. You’re nervous about taking this tiny little person home and protecting them with your life.

A car can feel like a scary place for both you and your child. They are cramped and strapped into this seat that’s double the size of them and you are trying to be as cautious of a driver as possible.

The good news is that car seats have so many safety features that give your child the utmost protection from injury. However, you must remember to use a proper car seat and install it properly in order to take advantage of the maximum safety benefits.

  • Don’t use a previously used car seat. There are expiration dates on every car seat and once it has been in an accident it can no longer be used again.
  • Make sure the car seat is installed properly. There are specific angles and inclines that it should be positioned at for optimal safety. You can visit a local check-in that offers complimentary car seat safety checks. Find your local inspection station here.
  • Car seat should be in the backseat and rear-facing until the maximum weight and height limits.
  • Always place the car seat’s chest clip as high up on the straps as possible, closest to the child’s chin and between the nipples.
  • NEVER leave a child in a car alone for ANY period of time.
  • Do not put your child in the car seat with heavy jackets. Always buckle them in without the excess clothing and place blanket or jacket over them after the buckle. The excess material can cause the harness to not fit snugly against the child and during an accident, they won’t be protected.

For more Car Seat Safety Resources, visit Infant Car Seat Safety 101

Safety Lessons

When your baby is closer to one and into their toddler years, you can begin to teach them important safety lessons that will help them to make smart, informed decisions.

Teach your little one:

  • How to safely get off a couch or bed feet first
  • They should always hold hands with an adult when out in public
  • Look for cars when near the street
  • Dont talk to strangers
  • Keep your car seat straps always buckled (toddlers tend to want to unbuckle them when they learn how to)
  • Always wear a life jacket/swimmies around pools/bodies of water until they are independent
  • swimmers.

I hope you could take away some important information from these safety tips for your babies and toddlers.

Important safety tips that all parents should know when raising a baby or toddler to keep them safe and protected at home, in the car, bath, sleep, and mealtime.

Hi I’m Marissa!

A mom of two little ones, here to provide some relatable experiences, tips, and tricks to the joys and challenges of pregnancy and childbirth through raising babies and toddlers.  Read more about me here.