Tip of the Week
Making home a safe, secure environment is a priority for any parent. It’s why we have smoke alarms and deadbolts, secure screens on second-floor windows and set the temperature of our hot water heaters to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. But what about unexpected sources of danger in our homes? While it’s impossible to anticipate and guard against every eventuality, it still pays to think about some dangers that are often overlooked. Here are some accident risks that are statistically worth worrying about when you’re working on making your home as safe as possible for your children.
- Tipping TVs: TVs keep getting bigger, and more of us have multiple sets in our homes. Unfortunately, many of those TVs will end up on dressers, coffee tables and folding tray tables that were never intended to hold a television. Even TVs placed on a stand made for displaying a set can tip over if not properly secured. There were an estimated 20,000 injuries related to TV tip-overs in the United States in 2010, according to Consumer Product Safety Commission data. Fortunately, it’s easy to reduce the risk of a TV tipping or falling. Never place any TV atop a dresser, bureau, bench, box or folding tray table. Using a TV wall mount can help minimize the chance of a TV falling on and injuring a child or adult.
- The laundry room: You may think of this room as one of the most harmless and useful rooms in the house, but the laundry room holds hidden dangers for children. Since 2005, at least two children have died and many more have been injured in washing machine-related accidents, U.S. News and World Report recently reported. In fact, CPSC data indicates that tens of thousands of injuries are attributed to washing machines and clothes dryers every year. Injuries may range from burns from hot dryer elements and limb injuries from spinning parts to accidental drowning if a child becomes submerged in a filled washer tub.
- Exercise equipment: Many Americans rely on home exercise equipment to stay in shape, but some of those machines can pose a safety risk to children. A CPSC study estimated that over an eight-year period, more than 46,000 exercise equipment-related injuries sent children 4 and younger to hospital emergency rooms. Treadmills, elliptical machines and other home fitness devices can cause a range of injuries, including cuts, fractures, dislocations, burns and even amputations. The study recommended parents be aware of the risks and take steps to reduce children’s exposure to home exercise equipment.
Family Movie Night
“Wreck-It Ralph,” in theaters
Length: 101 minutes
Violence/scary rating: 2.5
Sexual-content rating: 1.5
Profanity rating: 2
Drugs/alcohol rating: 1.5
Family Time rating: 2. This is a decent movie for families, with some video-game style violence the only thing to be aware of.
(Ratings are judged on a five-point scale, with 5 being “bad for kids” and 1 being “fine for kids.”)
“Ten Tiny Toes,” by Todd Tarpley and Marc Brown (illustrator)
Synopsis: Into the world came ten tiny toes, a hundred times sweeter than one could suppose. … There’s nothing sweeter in the world than a baby’s 10 tiny toes. From tiny feet nuzzled and tickled in the crib to bath time, playtime and those very first big steps, here is a wonderful way to commemorate the unforgettable moments in a young child’s life. Marc Brown’s adorable collage illustrations bring Todd Tarpley’s rhythmic text to life in this tender read-aloud. It is a joyous celebration of the unbreakable bond of love that guides a child through each exciting milestone and beyond. - Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Did You Know
According to a study published in The Journal of Pediatrics, kids who have attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) appear likely to benefit from just 20 minutes of exercise.
GateHouse News Service
Family Time: Three unexpected areas where you can improve home safety
Tip of the Week