As anyone with young, growing children will tell you, kids have an unusual attraction to kitchens. All those pots, pans, and interesting implement hold a special fascination for them – not to mention the plentiful cupboards, drawers, and doors that make excellent playthings.
However, your kitchen is a dangerous enough place for adults, let alone the little people in your life. In fact, some experts even recommend you should never allow your young children in there at all.
That’s all well and good in theory, of course, but the reality for most moms and dads is that it is a difficult rule to enforce. In the vast majority of cases, the only thing you can do is childproof your kitchen – and here are a few ideas to help you get started.
1Separate your Utensils
Like it or not, your kids will go into the kitchen, and they will rummage through your drawers. It is crucial that you keep all knives, sharp instruments and scissors separate from your usual ‘safe’ utensils.
According to cheftree.com, it’s a common accident to happen in the kitchen. You can buy latches for drawers – and cupboards, in fact – to ensure that your little ones won’t seriously injure themselves.
2The Unplugging Habit
Toasters, kettles – the list of electrical appliances we use in the kitchen is a long one. And every one of those objects is going to be an interesting prospect for your kids. Make sure they can’t use them by getting into the habit of unplugging your kitchen equipment every time you finish using it.
3The Cleaner Conundrum
The brightly colored disinfectants, cleaners, and polishes we all usually store in the kitchen can be fascinating – and lethal – to a child. To prevent accidents, look for cleaners that only contain natural ingredients – according to CleanHappens.com, these are safe around kids and pets. But also, get into the hot of keeping your bleaches and cleaning gear well out of reach.
Most of us use our cookers at least once a day, and as much as we try to be safe, the truth is it is sometimes impossible. When you are running a household, there are a million and one things to do, so hanging around while your potatoes cook through is a luxury you just don’t have time for.
So, to prevent little ones from reaching up and grabbing a boiling hot pan of water, make sure you get into the habit of turning the handle away from the front, and towards the back of the stove. Keep an eye out for your coffee pot in the morning, too – make sure it is well out of reach.
5Hide the spice
Finally, make sure that you keep your spices well out of reach. Believe it or not, many of them are actually toxic when ingested in large volumes, and can make your child incredibly sick. Needless to say, it is the same principle for alcohol – store it safely and securely out of sight and reach of your kids.
6Let Them Help
Why not let them join the fun? This learning tower is a great invention for any budding chefs. It can be easily DIY-ed or purchased all prepared and ready to use.
Instead of letting your kids balance on chairs, this one is actually a much safer and so cheap alternative!
7Make Them Their Own
Share a part of your world by letting your kids have their very own kitchen. They will be keen to copy what you’re doing, but without walking near hot pans and pots. These IKEA kitchens for kids are a great blank canvas that can be customized according to your needs or DIY skills.
Ok, we get it. Pretty obvious right? So one of the safest ways to keep kids out of trouble is to limit their access to the kitchen. If they are smaller, a baby gate will do the job! (this one is actually a dog gate, but that would work too right?)
9Use Natural Cleaners
We live in a world that is infused with chemicals. Why add more to your kitchen? There are plenty of all natural alternatives and you will not get a heart attack every time your little one licks the floor or kitchen surface.
Knives are probably one of the most dangerous objects in the kitchen and storing them high enough from kids reach should be top priority.
11Make Space for Kids
Let’s not forget kids want to be a part of your world and if they insist on being close to you when you cook, why not create a safe little space on their own. A chalkboard like this one is easy to make and fun both for you and kids.
If not in use by kids, you can write down your shopping list or meal plan. There are plenty of surfaces in the kitchen that can be turned into a chalkboard like this one, for example a side of the fridge!
Lots of accidents occur in the kitchen, and the sad thing is that many are preventable by developing better habits. Hopefully, these tips will help you secure your kitchen, so it’s safe for your kids.