Why is it Important to Toddler-Proof Christmas?
Parents are taking a risk, by continuing business as usual at Christmastime, when there is a toddler in the house. There are many holiday hazards that little ones need protection from. Find out below why toddler-proofing Christmas should probably be priority number one.
Why Christmas is Hazardous for Toddlers
Among the typical household decorations, foods, drinks, and activities in U.S. homes at Christmas, many could be dangerous for little ones toddling around. There are choking and swallowing, poisoning, and fire hazards as well as other possible accidents waiting to happen.
During the holiday season, children under age 4 are surrounded by items they are too young to handle. One of the dangers is the natural tendency a toddler has to put any and everything into his mouth, where the airway can be blocked. The following are some choking and swallowing hazards:
- Light bulbs
- Icicles or tinsel
- Ornaments on the tree
- Needles from the Christmas tree
- Spun glass or angel hair found in many ornaments, which can also cause eye damage, skin irritation, and cuts
Many common Christmas plants are potentially poisonous, along with other things that toddlers should be protected from. If you suspect that your little one has eaten something poisonous, including anything listed below, immediately call your pediatrician and/or the National Poison Center at 800-222-1222:
- Poinsettias, mistletoe, holly, and Jerusalem cherry plants.
- Even if labeled “nontoxic,” “bubble lights” that contain methylene chloride can be toxic, if a child drinks the fluid from 2 or more lights.
- At adult gatherings where alcohol is served, adults should hang onto their cups and throw away cups that are partially empty. It can be dangerous if little ones drink alcohol, even in small amounts.
Fire hazards tend to abound at Christmastime, posing a threat to the entire family, and the following are a few examples:
- Keep your Christmas tree away from heat sources, including electrical outlets and radiators.
- Before going to bed at night, unplug all indoor and outdoor lights and extinguish all candles. In addition, candles should be kept out of reach of toddlers.
- To avoid a fire, be careful not to overload circuits with an excess number of decorations, lights and accessories plugged into indoor or outdoor electrical outlets.
- Make sure smoke detectors are in operation in all recommended locations in your home.
Little hands are usually busy, and many accidents can occur during the Christmas season, if special precautions aren’t taken. The following are a few examples of injuries to be avoided:
- Breakable ornaments within a child’s reach can fall and break, potentially causing serious injuries.
- An entire Christmas trees could fall onto a child tugging on it.
- If Christmas cookies are frequently being baked, there is an increased risk of little fingers being burned.
Prepare for a Safe & Happy Holiday!
With mindfulness about potential hazards to toddlers, you can look forward to a safe and happy Christmas season. Make is special, whether your toddler’s first Christmas or the first one where he or she knows how to open presents and enjoy Christmas traditions.