It’s sometimes easy for us to scoff and say the world’s gone ‘health and safety mad’. Certainly, in the workplace or simply out and about there seems to be a fair few rules and regulations that appear to be a little bit silly. However, when it comes our own kids, it’s very much ‘Safety First’. Most of us would agree that the safety of our kids tops everything else. And, when it comes to the kitchen, that’s definitely the case. A kitchen can be a hazardous place; so, let’s remind ourselves of some top tips for keeping the kitchen safe for children.
Keeping the kitchen safe for children: The basics
For a young child, the kitchen is an exciting place. Mummy and Daddy are busy and bustling around; and all manner of exciting and tantalising sights and sounds can be seen and heard. But, of course, what is perfectly safe for an adult is a potential hazard to a small child with an inquisitive mind. Especially as little ones don’t really have a sense of risk.
From the parents’ point of view, it’s all about understanding what and where the potential hazards are and minimising the risks. So, here are the basics of keeping the kitchen safe for children.
Safety proof the kitchen
Look at all the sharp edges and corners. This is where kids could bang their heads or even injure their eyes. To keep things safe for children, consider installing protective guards. Alternatively, if you’re thinking of an upgrade, it’s might be a good idea to choose a design with curved edges.
All knobs and handles should be secure. Choose skid-proof rugs for the floor and make sure that any spills are wiped away quickly. Fit safety plugs and install safety latches to any cabinets and cupboards that could contain a multitude of hazards.
Even the most basic and ordinary of items, such as kitchen foil or cling film, can be dangerous, even deadly. Terrible tragedies can and do happen. Keeping the kitchen safe for children is about assessing the potential risk in everything around the home in every room. Moreover, bear in mind that – proportionately – the kitchen is the most potentially dangerous room of all.
Make kitchen appliances safe for children
After covering the basics, you should childproof your appliances. This is a vital aspect of making the kitchen safe for children. Because of the heat involved, the oven is a particular risk for children.
Obviously, it’s important to regularly service all gas and electric appliances. However, the real danger comes with day-to-day use. If you have little children around, it’s a good idea to use the back burners on top of the oven, whenever possible. If you do need to use the front rings, turn the handles of pots and pans inwards and away from the exploring hands of a child.
Small Appliances and other white goods
Always unplug the likes of toasters, food processors and coffee makers, storing them safely away from the reach of children. Make sure that cords are out of reach. Pulling playfully on an electrical cord is the most likely way an appliance can be pulled off a worktop.
It’s sensible to fit a door latch to the fridge. There are lots of potential hazards contained within. Glass bottles are an obvious potential danger, but there can be many others. To keep the kitchen safe for children, adults need to be one step ahead – anticipating the worst possible scenario. It’s unlikely that the worst will ever happen, but do you want to take that risk? No, of course you don’t.
You might think that knives and other sharp utensils placed in a dishwasher are completely safe and not posing a risk at all. However, to an adventurous child, the dishwasher can seem like a very interesting toy.
Keeping the kitchen safe: Final tips
To keep the kitchen safe for children, the best approach is to risk assess every aspect of the kitchen in terms of a worst case scenario. You need to look beyond the most obvious risks, such a boiling hot pans or sharp objects, and treat everything as a potential risk. In doing this, you are much more likely to create a childproof and kid-friendly kitchen. For tips and guidance of how to make sure your kitchen is safe for children, get in touch with the Kitchen Warehouse team.