Your little one can encounter a hazard around every corner. Suddenly things you’ve never given a second thought about -- stairs, electrical outlets, coffee tables -- are scary dangers that must be mitigated to make your home safe the little one. However, when baby-proofing your home, don’t overlook your plumbing system. The bathroom, specifically, harbors a number of risks to the health and safety of your kiddo.
Here’s how to make your bathroom a safe place for potty training and bathtime.
Secure the Toilet Lid
Your little one’s fascination with the toilet will test the limits of what can fit down the drain -- oh, and your patience, it will also test your patience. Remotes, crayons, shoes, anything that might be fun to see swirling around the bowl will make good flushing fodder for your toddler.
A baby-proof toilet latch will protect your plumbing (and your belongings.) There are a variety of toilet lid locks on the market. Whether or not they’ll fit your toilet can be a gamble. Multi-use latches are a safer bet. They have flexible straps to secure a variety of things in your home, including the refrigerator, cabinets, drawers and they’ll work for your commode, too.
Securing toilet lids will not only save toys and other items from being flushed, it could also save your child’s life. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that drowning by toilet is a very real safety hazard.
Save Your Toilet Paper Saver
The toilet paper hanging from the roll is too big of a temptation for tikes to pass up. Unrolling the paper makes a big, fun, fluffy heap on the floor or a trail of TP across the house. You might find it funny the first time it happens -- not so much the fourth time around.
A toilet paper saver is an easy-to-use device that makes it difficult for small children to unravel a roll but easy for adults to use TP as needed.
Install a Bath Spout Cover
Bathtime can get rambunctious! Don’t let baby bump his noggin on the bathtub faucet while playing pool noodle basketball. A bath spout cover prevents injuries and comes in a variety of fun options to transform your ho-hum bathtub faucet into a whimsical whale or your child’s favorite Sesame Street character.
Lower the Water Heater Temperature
If you’ve never adjusted your water heater’s temperature, it’s likely set to 140°. That’s the default setting and it’s keeping your water hotter than necessary. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends adjusting the temperature to 120°. Not will this setting prevent your little one from encountering scalding hot water, but it will alsoreduce the appliance’s energy consumption by as much as 22%.
Get a Water Softener
Hard water has excessive mineral content that can leave skin feeling itchy and dry and exacerbate skin conditions such as eczema. Hard water can also negate the benefits of mild soaps by interfering with the lathering process.
Because a baby’s skin is especially sensitive, you’ll want to do all that you can to protect it. A water softening system removes minerals such as magnesium and calcium.
Likewise, a whole-home water filtration system will make your water safer and purer for drinking and mixing with baby formula. This system filters out impurities that could be present in your municipal or well water supply, such as nitrates. Excessive amounts of nitrates from sewage and fertilizer can lead to methemoglobinemia, or “Blue Baby Syndrom.” The condition affects prevents red blood cells from carrying the necessary amount of oxygen, resulting in fatigue, lethargy, shortness of breath, or in extreme cases, loss of consciousness. Babies are especially susceptible.
Bottom line: When welcoming your bundle of joy into your home, take a moment to safeguard your little one from plumbing-related hazards. Many of the tips mentioned here are easy DIY jobs, but for those that require a pro such, as installing a water softener, turn to the experts at Mercy Plumbing. To schedule your appointment, call (832) 734-9731.