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Home Safety

Injury Prevention & Safety

The leading cause of injury in the home is falls. Other causes of injury in the home include burns, poisoning, drowning, choking, and suffocation. As health professionals you have an opportunity to share with your clients how to reduce or prevent falls in the home.

Key Messages

Scalds/Burns

  • Advise parents/caregiver to set the hot water temperature in their home to 49° C (120° F) (or warm) and to use lids on hot drinks, even at home.
  • Keep hot liquids away from your baby.
  • Encourage clients to visit Child Safety: Preventing Burns (MyHealth.Alberta.ca)

Poisoning & Choking

  • Parents should keep small toys, latex balloons, and household objects like coins and jewelry (e.g. amber necklaces) away from their baby.
  • Objects that fit in a toilet paper roll are choking hazards.
  • Cut blind cords or secure them out of reach.
  • Encourage clients to visit the Poisoning and Drug Information Centre PADIS
  • Encourage clients to visit Choking Prevention in Small Children (MyHealth.Alberta.ca)

Drowning

  • Advise clients to NEVER leave their baby unattended in, around, or near water. Baby bath seats are not a substitute for adult supervision. Bath tub rings are not recommended.
  • Babies can drown quickly and easily in less than 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water.
  • Drowning hazards in the home include bath tubs, toilets, sinks, and buckets.
  • Encourage clients to visit the Lifesaving Society of Alberta/NWT site

Playing

  • Babies and young children need opportunities to move around and develop their fine motor and gross motor skills.  Safe indoor environments can be a great place for the development of these motor skills.
  • Advise parents to secure heavy furniture, move playpens and cribs away from windows and secure windows with window safety devices
  • Parents should stay close to young children during play
  • Encourage clients to visit Child Safety: Preventing Falls (MyHealth.Alberta.ca)