Babies and toddlers are natural explorers. They want to touch and feel everything within their reach—this is how they learn about the world around them.
As their parent, it’s your job to keep them safe, while still letting them experience the different textures and sensations around them. But, how do you know when a simple object can pose a danger to your young one?
Tracey Fejt, registered nurse and a Banner Health trauma outreach and injury prevention coordinator at Banner Children’s Cardon Children’s Medical Center in Mesa, Arizona, shares her expertise on what everyday items are not safe for your little one:
- Pet toys. Children’s toys must go through rigorous safety inspections and be designed appropriately by age – not true for toys designated for your pets. These toys can also expose your little one to dangerous pet germs.
- Trash can lid. What could be more fun for a toddler than opening and closing the trash can lid? Germs aren’t the only concern (think Salmonella and Norovirus), your child’s little fingers could be shut in a closed lid. To stay safe, consider a trash can lock.
- Amber teething necklaces. These teething necklaces have become very popular, but there is no scientific evidence that they are effective. Amber teething necklace dangers include choking or strangulation.
- Laundry pods. Colorful and small, these tempting contraptions can cause vomiting, breathing problems or child poisoning, if ingested.
- Latex balloons. These are a leading cause of choking in babies and toddlers because, if swallowed, it could cover your child’s airway. Balloons should only be given to kids 8 years and older.
- Your purse. A treasure chest of items for your toddler or baby, it is also like a bottomless pit of potential danger. Small items could be a choking hazard, and medications could be ingested—just to name a couple of concerns.
- Button batteries. Dangers of small button batteries include choking or even internal chemical burns.
Being aware of possible dangers to your toddler or baby is an important first step. But it’s critical to also know what to do in case of an emergency. Fejt recommends learning CPR and the Heimlich Maneuver. Be prepared and have a local poison hotline number handy. For minor injuries, visit an Urgent Care and, for more serious injuries or illnesses, your nearest Emergency Department or call 911.
For more safety tips, visit: bannerhealth.com/services/wellness/support/safety.