How To Child Proof Your Home

ID-100194378Bringing home your newborn baby is pure delight. You now have a new member of the family and this delightful bundle of joy will grow everyday.Before you know it, your little one will be crawling and walking with curiosity abound. You want your child safe and baby proofing your home early is key to adjusting to the changes and being prepared.

Here are some tips to get you and your tot ready.

Bathroom Safety

Every day products you use could be poisonous products if ingested by your child. They could be in your bathroom under the sink, or on the counter within reach of curious little hands.. Make sure to install safety latches on all cabinets and drawers and store away products on the counter.

You will really have a reason to tell everyone to keep the toilet lids closed now. A child can lean and fall into a toilet very easily because they are more top heavy and when a toddler is learning to walk they are awkward and fall in. A child can drown in just a couple inches of water, so make sure you attach a latch that will keep the lid closed. Also, this could also save you a bundle on a plumbing bill. Why you ask? Children could also drop items in the toilet that could clog it up. While this may be an inconvenience to you and others in your home the safety of the baby must come first.

Check out how hot your water is. Scalding is very painful and you could save your child from an unnecessary accident by setting your water heater to 120 degrees. Third degree burns can happen to your child within seconds from water set at 140 degrees.

As with every outlet in your home, do not forget the bathroom. Purchase protective plug – ins or safety caps for this purpose in the bathroom too.

Unplug and put away and curling irons, hair dryers, electric hair curlers or anything else they could grab and get a potential burn.

Kitchen Safety

As with every outlet in your home, purchase protective plug – ins or safety caps to protect them from cleaning product to dish soap.Keep your little ones at a safe distance when using the stove. If you have a pot boiling water and pick up your child, they may want to reach out to the steam and they could get burned. Also keep the pot handles turned in and away from reach.

Appliances and cookware should be kept under counters and in drawers with locks on them to prevent and injury. Keep a poison control phone number handy on the refrigerator or if you have a note board. You can also purchase stickers with pictures such as Mr. Yuk which was conceived by Dr. Richard Moriarty to help children learn to avoid ingesting poisons,

In the House Everyday Living Safety

Safety gates are great for keeping kids out of rooms you may want to work in or have set something up they should not get into like a project for an older child in the home, or one of your own. They also protect them at the top and bottom of stairs.Doorknob covers are also good to keep your little on from going into a room you do not want them venturing into or out to the family pool.

Bumper proof your furniture. Coffee table with a squared edge is a good place to start and work your way around the room to see if there is any other place your child could fall into and get injury.Pull your furniture away from high windows so they cannot climb up and fall out. The screen is not strong enough to hold them back.

Window blinds have been linked to deaths in children. In 2009 4-year-old daughter of boxer Mike Tyson died after she either slipped or put her head in the loop of a cord hanging under the console.Consider replacing their older window coverings with the new cordless products.

Make sure your book cases, shelving and heavy furniture attached to walls is secure with brackets and anchors. You child may like to climb and this would be tragic if a bookcase or entertainment center fell over on them.

Toy chests are a great for keeping the toys all in one place, make sure you remove a free falling lid or have a lid that stays open and is very light.

While child proofing your home is a great way to protect them, it is not all you can do. Supervising your child at all times is the best way to prevent any type of injury.

Photo courtesy of Jomphong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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How To Prepare Food Safely in the Kitchen

ID-10093278The heart of the home it has been said is the Kitchen.  This is the place for many, who have waited for Mom to make their favorite dish and the family can gather to talk and enjoy a good meal or Mom’s famous cookies. The Kitchen is also the place where practicing safety is essential. Here are some tips:

Handle with Care

If you have ever worked in a professional kitchen or a meat department, you know that a chef or butcher keep their knives very sharp and some even have a set of knives they alone only use. Why are sharp knives so important? A sharp knife will not slip as easily as a dull one especially if you are cutting a tomato or a food item that has a slippery surface. A sharp knife does not need as much pressure to cut and you have a better control over the blade.

When using a knife practice safe cutting techniques. If you are a beginner cook, start off slowly and carefully with your cutting. Not sure of what the safe techniques of using a knife are, take a class or ask a professional. There are many different sizes and shapes for knives because each one does a number of things for the purpose of boning a fish, slicing vegetables to cutting bread.  Learning what your knives are for will help you to use them more efficiently. Here are a few tips that are helpful.

Always cut away from you body

Use a cutting board that does not slip, you can put a towel under the board or purchase one that is made not to slip.

When cutting a round piece of food like a carrot, carefully cut a sliver down one side so it will lay flat on the cutting board.

Keep the knife clean knife and that includes the handle. A greasy or slippery handle can cause you to slip and possibly have an accident.

Never, never put a knife in a sink full of dish water. You could forget it is there or another person not knowing it is there could grab the sharp blade and be injured. When cleaning, always keep the sharp edge away from you and handle carefully.

A reflex to grab something that is falling is in all of us. Do Not Grab a falling knife. Let it go to the ground and get out of the way to avoid it landing on your feet.

Grease Fires

For and foremost, every home should have a fire extinguisher. It should be kept in a cool dry place in the kitchen or near an exit/entrance in/out of the kitchen. A fire extinguisher should never be kept near the stove or other heat source. Make sure it is kept updated and you know how to use it.

Would you know what to do if you have a grease fire on your stove? The first thing you Do Not Want To Do is put water on a grease fire. Oil and water do not mix and you will make the fire spread.  If the fire is contained to the pot or pan you are cooking with, put a lid on it and turn off the burner. Wait until the pot or pan is cooled down before handling. Get more information on how to handle a grease fire on your stove… .

Fires can also start in your microwave and oven. If you have a fire in either, do  not open the door. Fire loves oxygen and this will feed the fire. Turn off the appliance, keep the door closed and watch for the fire to burn out. Any time you feel that you cannot contain a fire and it is getting out of control, get outside and call for help. See more about containing an oven fire here…

What You Wear Matters

Wearing clothes that will not interfere and catch fire. Example: long sleeve shirts and open shoes. Long loose sleeves could catch fire or get into the hot food your cooking. Drop a knife, hot food or something that is scalding and your could injure your legs and feet. Closed shoes can help prevent these type of accidents. Also its a good idea if you have long hair, to pull it up, no one likes to find a strand of hair in their meal.

Oven Mitts

Oven Mitts need to be away from the stove top and the sink. Near the stove top and they can catch fire. Near a sink and they could get wet. You use a wet Oven Mitt to get a hot pan out of the oven, or a pot off the stove and your going to get burned. Keep them in a drawer or hang them somewhere accessible but safe.

Spills and Falls

Make sure to clean up all spills on the floor immediately. Falls can happen easily and it would be terrible to fall with a scalding pot of sauce. Have rugs that stick to the floor and not slip and slide. Keep floors clutter free of clutter to avoid tripping or falling.

Stove Top Safety

When cooking on the stove top keep the pots handles turned in so you do not accidentally knock one over. Be careful when lifting lids from a boiling or simmering pot, as the steam will be very hot and could scald your arms. Never cook with a child or baby in your arms over the stove top, they could get scalded as well.  Keep your stove top free of any aprons, dish towels, packages from food products or anything that could catch fire. Keep your cooking area as clean as you can, especially when cooking with grease.

Clean Appliances Carefully

Blenders, Food Processors and any appliance with a sharp blade should be turned off before touching the blades and careful when cleaning. If you can take apart the blade section do so and put into your dishwasher.

Never leave what you are cooking unattended. If you have to answer the phone or the door, or your going to be away from the kitchen for any amount of time, turn off the burner. It is easy to get distracted and stay away longer then you thought would and this could potentially lead to burning or over cooking your meal.

Cooking With Kids

When cooking with kids, safety comes first. Depending on their age, give them easy things to do away from the stove. Have them sit at a counter or table in your kitchen and stir a cake mix or make a salad. Wait until they are of an age that they can understand how to handle utensils in the kitchen or to cook hot food before moving on.  Never, never leave a child unattended in the kitchen.

Pets in the Kitchen

Pets safety in the kitchen also on the top of the list. Depending on the size of your dog, little ones can get under foot and cause an accident to you and them. Larger dogs could possibly pull food off the counter, and if its hot that is not good for the dog who does not know better.  You may want to consider keeping your pet out of the kitchen while you are cooking to avoid an accident.

 

 

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhoto.net

 


What To Do After A Flood

flood-139000_640When floods occur from flash flooding (sudden rapid rising of water along streams or low lying areas) Severe Thunder Storms, Tropical Storms and Hurricanes, the streets and your yard could be covered. The number one catastrophe from flooding is drowning and occurs mostly during flash floods.

If you are under a flood or flash flood warning be prepared to evacuate and head out for higher ground

Always have a NOAA Weather Radio on hand with batteries. The NOAA Weather Service will keep you up to date for flood warnings, hurricanes, tropical storms and other critical information you will need.

Stay Out of The Water

Walking through standing or moving water can be hazardous. Only 6 inches of moving water above your ankles can make you fall. Standing water can also build up microorganisms that contaminate and cause skin disease.

Electricity and Water Do Not Mix

The number two cause of death due to flooding is electricity wires and power lines down and even in the water. Electricity can make a pond or standing water charged and deadly. Stay away from them, do not test to see if they are active. Contact your electrical company immediately if you see power lines or wires in or near any water.

Returning Home

If you had to evacuate, return home when officials have stated the area is safe.
Before you enter your home, check the outside and your property. Look for down power lines and gas lines that may be damaged. If you smell gas or hear a hissing noise, contact the fire department immediately. Keep pets and children away from the water and any dangerous places.

Approach your property carefully and check for any entry way damage, roofs that may be falling down, cracks in walls, windows and any outside damages.

Inside your home may have chemicals such as cleaning supplies, gasoline from the garage, and other things commonly used in the home that are now scattered and need cleaning up. Wear gloves and protective clothing and rubber boots.

Check for snakes, some may be poisonous, and small animals on your property and inside your home, that may have come in with the flood.

Check your food and make sure to throw out anything you question. Throw away anything that has been effected by the flood waters. Do not use the waters for washing dishes or baths, ice cubes, or anything, remember this water is contaminated. Check with your local public heath department for a boil water recommendation or for treatment of any water.

Take pictures right away of any damages as your are checking your property and home for insurance purposes. If you can send the pictures to your email or upload to a photo website where you can store them. If anything happens to your camera or phone that takes pictures, you have a back up.

Contact After The Flood

Go to the RedCross.org/SafeandWell website and register. After a storm or event if you have internet access you can go online and let your friends and family know you are ok. If you do not have internet access you can call 1-800-GET-INFO and register or to let everyone know your ok.

Flood Insurance Tips

Homeowners Insurance does not cover flood damage. Flood Insurance is separate policy. Even if you do not live in a flood zone, consider flood insurance in Florida. Once their is a tropical storm or hurricane, in your area, there is a possibility of flooding. Without flood insurance you will pay out of pocket expenses for the damages. In many cases, it takes 30 days after the purchase for a policy to take effect contact us today for more information.

Call us today to get your questions answered. 863-453-3903

 

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