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Many moms who are nesting begin to ready their nurseries. Clothes are washed, murals are painted, and board books are lovingly placed in shelves. Night lights are plugged in and turned on to cast sweet shadows.
Give InKind recently sat down with a group of moms regarding baby safety gear. We wanted to learn what safety gear was considered to be actually useful. In other words, we wanted to weed out the useless things.
With the benefit of hindsight, these moms make minimal recommendations. As one woman said to me:
“The best advice I can ever offer is not to buy anything until you actually need it.”
Still, investing in some safety gear is worth it. Moms report that getting on top of safety gear is something that makes them feel prepared. This alone is an amazing thing to know and to build on. The more confident anyone feels as they face uncertainty with anticipation – the better.
Babies grow quickly and reach milestones all of a sudden. All of a sudden they roll over.
And off they go.
It’s important to remember that a woman pregnant with a second (or third, etc.) child may have a shift in safety needs. Once able to easily follow a toddler around, she may benefit from additional gear once she is herself less mobile – again nursing a newborn. For this reason, baby safety gear items actually make great baby sprinkle gifts.
Many women report that a great baby monitor gave them terrific peace of mind. Trusting babies to sleep safely may sometimes be more anxiety provoking than people realize. A monitor that allows baby to sleep alone for a spell can provide a necessary break for mom.
Baby gates were also high on the list of necessary items. For those people whose houses have stairs, baby gates can be sanity saving. Babies love nothing more than to go up and down stairs. It is a great way for them to develop a certain dexterity. But if a parent is not available to follow baby up and down stairs 12,000 times a day, a baby gate is a necessity.
“Gates, and more gates.” G, mom of 4.
Cabinet locks were also top picks. Babies explore the world with taste and keeping them far away from anything that is dangerous to ingest is high on the priorities list.
“Magnetic latch on the sink cabinet. S, Mom of 2.
Latches for toilets were popular. Children can be injured in unlikely places and with very little water depth. Ensuring that household exploration is safe and that dangerous experiments are promptly and safely discouraged makes sense.
“Toilet locks were critical once my son was born!” – P, Mom of 4 (with one set of twins).
Padding for hard edges was appreciated. (One never notices all the literal hard edges of the world until one has a baby). Fire hearths or coffee tables hurt tiny heads far more than one would ever have imagined in a pre-baby life. So pad away!
Finally, straps to fasten furniture to walls rounds out of our must-have list. Check things like bookshelves, entertainment centers, and chests of drawers. If they are light and/or top-heavy they can topple when toddlers try to scale them – reaching for something on top.
“Safety Straps to keep furniture from toppling.” J, Mom of 2.
Where baby safety is concerned, an ounce of prevention is absolutely worth a pound of cure.