Kitchen is one of the important spots in the house. However, it can also be the most dangerous space, especially for children.
Why? That’s because it is typically equipped with objects that can be dangerous to kids, such as sharp utensils, hot appliances, pots and pans.
Unfortunately, with young children at home, it can be quite difficult to try to prevent them from getting into unsafe areas.
Kids are naturally curious; they always want to explore unfamiliar things with boldness without hesitation. Irrespective of how interesting their brave nature may be, they can be in danger the very moment you look elsewhere.
Nonetheless, it is expected that there should always be a few minor accidents when children enter the kitchen – whether to help you prepare dishes or when they go to the kitchen to drop their plates.
However, as a parent, your role is to ensure that the kitchen is less risky for your children. Also, ensure you put an eye on children or you get someone to look after them while you prepare the meal.
That way, you can pay more attention to your cooking while your children are happily distracted form you too.
While it might be difficult, these 8 ways below can help make the kitchen environment child-friendly for your little once. Here they are;
1. Fix safety locks
First, get locks for your cabinets, refrigerator and oven.
Those locks will restrict kids from having access to things they’re not supposed to open such as; hot oven or fridge.
However, you can decide to leave at least two accessible cupboards stacked with kiddies’ plates they can play with. You can as well use that opportunity to teach them how to stack plates, uncover lids and how to cover them back.
Most importantly, make sure the accessible cabinet is positioned in the area of the kitchen where there’s enough space so things don’t accidentally fall on them. Make sure drawers are soft-close to avoid the risk of trapped fingers in the drawer door.
2. Keep the kitchen floor clean and tidy
No doubt, children love spending time playing on the floor.
Since the kitchen floor is one of the major habitats for harmful bacteria to grow on; ensure regular sweeping and mopping of the kitchen floor. It will help eradicate bacteria.
Not only that, try to pick up food drops immediately before your pick them and put in their mouth.
Lastly, place a non-slip rug over the tile to avoid children from falling and slipping.
3. Keep sharp knives in your upper cabinet
When children grow, they love opening drawers to play with and anything they see inside.
Ensure you keep knives or any sharp objects away from their reach. Instead of keeping them in the lower part of the cupboard, relocate them to the upper part that is unreachable to your kids.
4. Store medicine and foods from lower cabinets
Kids are used to putting everything they see in their mouth. Try to keep things like food or medicine away from them.
In as much as medicine bottles are hard to open, keep them far away from the reach of kids and make sure the lids are properly covered.
Though food isn’t dangerous for kids’ consumption, it can likely be a choking hazard especially for younger children who are still learning to chew and swallow. Relocate food carriers out of their reach to avoid the chances of them filling their mouth with what they can’t swallow.
Also, be mindful of foods that your kids are allergic to. For example, some kids react to honey and salt, especially when consumed in large quantity.
5. Keep electrical gargets out of reach
Children love playing with dangling cables and like to pull them. If a cable is connected to a kitchen appliance, keep it out of their reach because when they pull it, the appliance might fall and cause injury to them.
Not only that, since children love to flip switches too; move the appliances away or you turn on the “lock” feature mostly in ovens and refrigerators.
6. Avoid storing cleaners under the sink
Most homes prefer storing cleaners and detergents under their kitchen sink which is very accessible and dangerous to kids.
When kids get under the sink, it’s easy for them to ignorantly play with cleaners and detergents containing a harmful chemical that can hurt them when it gets into the eyes or mouths.
Nevertheless, ensure you store them in the upper cabinet or keep them out of kids’ reach.
7. Turn pot handles backwards
When cooking in the kitchen, endeavour to turn the pot handle pointing outward over the cooker.
This will prevent your child from pulling the pot down or pouring hot contents on his or her body, which can cause injury and burns.
However, to prevent this incident from occurring, turn the handles toward the back of the cooker so your child cannot see the pot or panhandle to grab.
8. Teach them about safety
It’s never too late to start teaching your kids about safety.
Little by little you keep teaching them till they get to know things they shouldn’t play with. It is also a good practice for you to turn every moment to a learning opportunity. At first, start with easy words like; hot, burn, and no, etc.
When they grow older and begin to express interest to assist you in the kitchen, allow them to take up easy tasks, while you supervise. This will also be an advantage for them to learn fast.
Finally, when you apply these tips, it will help reduce the danger and risk your kitchen can cause your children. Don’t forget that you can still safeguard your kids, and at the same time allow them to enjoy spending more time cooking with you. Take the necessary precautions to create a child-friendly kitchen and this will help reduce risk and danger for your children.