Pregnancy and Beyond

Babies around 9 months of age are extremely curious. Your baby is probably crawling everywhere. He likes to grab objects and put them into his mouth. He also pulls himself up and everything else down.

It may be inconvenient to rearrange your household for the safety of your baby, but it can prevent injuries. Even after you childproof your home, always watch your child closely.

Here are a few important safety rules to follow:


  • Never leave baby alone in or near the bathtub-it takes only seconds to drown. If you must leave, take baby with you.
  • To prevent scalds from hot tap water, reduce the setting on your water heater to its lowest or "warm" setting, no higher than 120° F. Test the water before putting baby in.


All household cleaners, polishes poisons, and all medicines, should be kept in locked cabinets. Drawers with perfume, cosmetics, scissors, etc. should be locked. Use commercially available cabinet child guards. Keep the poison control number by the phone: (1-800-366-8888).

Hazardous Objects

  • Keep pins and other sharp objects out of baby's reach. Check floors for buttons, beads, and other small items.
  • Install safety plugs or outlet covers in wall sockets.
  • Remove electric cords and sharp edged furniture or cover the sharp edge with pads.
  • Lower the crib mattress as baby begins to sit and stand.


  • Keep plastic bags, long telephone cords, and venetian blind cords away from baby.
  • Do not let baby chew or suck on a balloon, small objects or large pieces of food.
  • Do not place anything around baby's neck and remove cords from his jackets.
  • Keep containers of water out of your baby's reach. Young children can drown in even a few inches of water.


Securely fasten baby safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs and across open doorways to prevent baby from falling or entering unsafe areas. For added protection, gates should also be placed at the bottom of stairs. A door at the bottom of the stairs should be kept closed. Choose a gate with a straight top edge and rigid mesh screen. Remember, even though a sturdy gate may be purchased and installed, close supervision is still necessary.


  • Babies learn by exploring their environment so the use of playpens should be minimal. However, playpens can be a safe place to put your baby when you need to answer the door, stir a hot pot of soup, or comfort an older child.
  • Mesh netting should have a very small weave - smaller than the tiny buttons on a baby's clothing.
  • Slats on wooden playpens should be no more than 2 3/8 inches apart (the width of a soft drink can).
  • Never leave baby in a mesh playpen with the drop-side down.
  • Remove large toys, bumper pads, or boxes from inside the playpen; they can be used for climbing out.
  • Don't string toys across the playpen.
  • Check vinyl or fabric-covered rails frequently for holes and tears. A teething baby may chew off pieces and choke.
  • If staples are used to attach the mesh side to the floor plate, make sure none are loose or missing.

Never use a playpen that has holes in the mesh sides.