To Prevent Strangulation and Suffocation
Use a crib that meets national safety standards. Look for a JPMA (Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association) certification label.
Choose a crib with no more than 2 3/8 inches of space between the slats or spindles. Ensure there are no missing slats or spindles.
Use a crib with cornerpost extensions no greater than 1/16 inch.
Ensure that the crib mattress fits snugly and the side rail is locked.
Remove all toys, pillows and plastic materials from the crib.
Never hang anything on or above a crib with string or ribbon longer than seven inches.
Avoid strings on infant products, including pacifiers and rattles.
Tie up all window blind and drapery cords, or cut the ends and fit with safety tassels.
To Prevent Falls
Keep furniture, especially the crib, changing table and chairs, away from windows and draperies.
Secure tall and heavy furniture to walls and cushion sharp edges.
Install window guards on all windows. Use a type that can be quickly removed by adults if the window is also an emergency fire exit.
Never leave children unattended on furniture or changing tables, even for a second.
Keep all baby supplies, diapers and toiletries nearby, but out of children's reach.
Remove bumper pads and hanging mobiles from the crib when infants are able to pull up and stand.
To Prevent Poisoning
Test homes built before 1978 for lead-based paint. Cover lead paint with sealant or hire a professional company to remove the paint.
Install and maintain carbon monoxide detectors within 10 feet of each bedroom.
Keep the number for the Minnesota Poison Control System (1-800-222-1222) by the phone.
To Prevent Choking
Provide age-appropriate toys (indicated on safety labels).
Use a small parts tester or a cardboard toilet paper tube to determine if a small toy or toy part presents a choking hazard. If the toy or part can pass through the tester or the tube, it is a choking hazard.
Make sure that toys intended for infants and younger children are stored separately from those for older children.
Check old and new toys regularly for damage. Make any necessary repairs or discard damaged toys.
Make sure eyes, buttons and other parts are securely sewn on stuffed animals.
Make sure toy chests have removable lids or spring-loaded supports.
To Prevent Fires
Install and maintain a working smoke detector.
Make sure children's pajamas are flame-resistant.
Place safety covers over all electrical outlets.