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Kitchen safety

Advice on baby safety in the kitchen with information on potential hazards and precautions you should take.
The kitchen can be a dangerous place for an infant, however by taking the right precautions you can baby-proof your kitchen and minimise the risk of any hazards.

Some people choose to fit their kitchen door with a baby gate. This can be a good option as providing the gate is kept shut, baby can't enter unattended. It can also be useful to keep baby out of harms way while you are cooking, however you are then left wandering what baby is getting up to in another room. A good compromise would be to put a play pen in your kitchen (if you have space) so that baby is out of the way but still gets attention. If toys are kept in the playpen too, the risk of tripping in the kitchen will be minimised.

Babies are naturally inquisitive so ensuring they can't get their hands on any sharp objects or hazardous substances is imperetive. For this reason its important to fit child-proof locks on all low-level kitchen cupboards, drawers and bins. Locks for appliances such as the dishwasher and oven are also available. You should also move appliances such as kettles, toasters and blenders to the back of the work surface and minimise their flexes.

When cooking you should try to use the back rings if possible and always ensure that saucepans are placed with their handals facing backwards. Stove guards and cooker knob covers are also available to prevent baby accessing the cooker. Hot food and drinks should be kept away from the edges of tables and work surfaces and dishes and utensils should be placed in the sink as soon as they have been used.

It is vital that any detergents, cleaning products, alcohol, matches, plastic bags and cling film are locked in a cupboard out of baby's reach. You should also ensure that cutlery and glasswear are not accessible. It is advisible to avoid using tablecloths when you have a small baby as there is a risk they may tug the cloth and tip objects near the edge of the table onto themselves.

When using a high chair you should ensure that your child always wears the safety harness and is never left unattended. So as to avoid toppling, high chairs should be placed in the middle of the room away from objects and surfaces baby could push against.

By ensuring all hazzards are locked out of baby's reach and making sure that baby is never left alone in the kitchen - potential accidents can be minimised and the kitchen can be a fun room for all the family.

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