Keeping your baby and children safe at home




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  Ages and Stages

Many parents are taken by surprise by what their baby or toddler does next. So we encourage parents to stay one step ahead of their developing child, understanding what behaviours – and the accidents associated with them – may come next.


  Preventing Accidents at Home

With children at home over the coming weeks, many families are likely to be worried about their child having a serious accident (rightly so when you think 90% of accidents to under 5’s happen at home!). We have provided some helpful information here to help you reduce the risks in and around your home.



A drowning child can’t speak or control their arms. They slip quietly under the water. It’s only in the movies they splash about and cry for help. It’s a scary thought.



Falls are the most common cause of accidental injury to children. Did you know that one of the most common reasons that young children fall is that their rapid development takes parents and carers by surprise?


   Burns and Scolds 

It often comes as a surprise to parents just how easily a young child can badly burn themselves. Because their skin is more delicate than an adult’s, a baby or toddler is more at risk from serious burns. It often comes as a surprise to parents just how easily a young child can badly burn themselves.


  Hair Straighteners

Did you know that hair straighteners can get as hot as an iron? They actually get so hot, that you can cook bacon and eggs on them!

Small children find it fascinating to watch Mummy, a big sister or perhaps Daddy do their hair, but your child can suffer serious burns if they touch your straighteners or curling tongs. Nearly 1 in 10 parents of under-fives admit their child has suffered a serious burn from hair straighteners or curling tongs.



Did you know that suspected poisoning is one of the most common reasons for young children to be taken to A&E? Swallowing medicines, like everyday painkillers that you might keep in your handbag or bedside cabinet, is the most common way for children to be poisoned but detergent capsules and concentrated liquids under the kitchen sink can harm children too.



Each day around 40 under-5s are rushed to hospital after choking on something, or swallowing something dangerous. Food is the most likely cause, but small objects and toys can also be risky for young children.



Most people don’t think it is possible for their child to strangle themselves. But there are a growing number of cases of children catching themselves on blind cords or other loops, often when they're climbing. If your child gets tangled in one of these cords it could be fatal.



Babies and young children don't have the control that adults have over their bodies. They can wriggle and squirm but it is harder for them to move out of a dangerous situation.


  Car Seat Safety

If the chin touches the chest whilst your baby is slouched forward, their airway can be cut off so they cannot breathe. This is called ‘positional asphyxiation’.

You can reduce the risk by only using your car seat in the car and according to manufacturer’s guidelines. Remove your baby’s outerwear to make sure they are sat in an upright position, and to avoid overheating.


  Button Batteries

If a button battery - particularly a lithium coin cell battery - gets stuck in the food pipe, energy from the battery reacts with saliva to make the body create caustic soda. This is the same chemical used to unblock drains! This can burn a hole through the food pipe and can lead to catastrophic internal bleeding and death. The reaction can happen in as little as two hours. Button batteries are also dangerous if they get stuck in a child’s nose or ear.


  Summer Safety for your baby

The weather is getting warmer, so the Lullaby Trust have put together some tips on baby summer safety so you can enjoy the summer and keep baby safe when the weather gets hot.


   Face Masks

The government guidelines, published on the 11th Mat 2020, state: "Face coverings should not be used by children under the age of 2 or those who may find it difficult to manage them correctly."

Face masks cause a significant suffocation or strangulation risk in babies and children under 2.




You will also find information on our accident prevention page and our leaflets page.

Please click here to access a help sheet on accident prevention from the institute of Health Visiting

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