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10 Hidden Household Dangers
10 Hidden Household Dangers
While homeowners may know how to prepare their households to keep children away from dangerous items, they don’t often think of the things that could cause themselves harm. You should always be looking out for uncommon items that could pose a threat to your child’s safety, but don’t neglect your well-being in the meantime. Plenty of household items could pose a risk to you, too.
Household Dangers for Adults
How often have you looked at the dangers you could encounter in your home? Though it’s not as common as finding hazards for children, household dangers still exist for adults.
Making some of these mistakes could result in severe injury, a disoriented mental state, or even death. Ensure you take care of all these risks alongside childproofing activities.
1. Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors are fantastic to have in your home, but they must be functional. If one needs its battery replaced, you should put a new battery in it as soon as possible. The beeping might be annoying, but the device is trying to warn you ahead of time so you don’t run the risk of having inoperative smoke detectors in your house.
Most households have two or fewer smoke detectors in their home, while only a small fraction has more than five. Depending on how large your home is, you may look into installing more smoke detectors so you can have a backup plan.
2. Lack of Handrails
In a house with stairs, handrails are a necessity. Without them, especially if the stairs are steep, you might find yourself hurtling down the stairs after one misstep. Handrails could save you from a nasty fall.
You can use them to guide your way down the stairs if you’re not paying attention, but they can also be lifesavers in case something on the stairs, such as a child’s or dog’s toy, causes you to slip.
3. Excess Clutter
While clutter doesn’t pose an immediate danger to your person, it can still be detrimental to your mental state. You want to feel relaxed at home, not tense. A cluttered space can cause a person to feel intense emotions, particularly related to stress and anxiety.
Initially, it may not endanger your physical health, but the effects of stress on the human body aren’t something to ignore. Having a clean home could mean the difference between a clear mind and a cluttered one.
4. Unstable Furniture
You should routinely check your furniture to make sure it’s still in working order. Some pieces of furniture could be close to falling apart, and you might not even realize it if you don’t use that furniture often. A chair falling apart underneath you could mean you sustain injuries from a fall. Bookshelves can collapse and injure those nearby if they’re poorly or incorrectly constructed to begin with or overloaded with possessions.
Keep yourself and your guests safe by checking your furniture and replacing that which is rickety or not fit to sit on or use.
5. Mixing Medications
While it may be tempting to take multiple medications at once to solve whatever problem you’re having right away, it’s not effective or safe. Mixing medications means they could cancel one another out, and instead of feeling the effects of both, you won’t get the benefits of either drug.
In addition to the medication not working correctly, you may increase your risk of experiencing detrimental side effects that could endanger your life. It’s important to discuss with your doctor the possibilities of mixing certain medications before you do it — it could be what keeps you safe from a lethal combination.
Sometimes you need to log off, put your device away, and be fully present in the moment. When you’re dealing with appliances and tasks that require your complete focus, you shouldn’t be trying to multitask. Floating away from a hot burner while you’re making dinner could lead to drastic consequences, for example.
Phones are the number one driving distraction in the United States. When you’re on the road, especially if your children are with you, you should set a good example and keep your phone away. When essential tasks need to take precedence, checking social media or catching up with friends can wait.
7. Decorative Rugs
You might have aging parents or another elderly family member in your household. Sometimes, you have to look out for them as you would a child and be aware of all the risks your home could pose. In addition to keeping things picked up off the floor to minimize falling risks, you should take a look at your rugs.
If one of your rugs is prone to bunching up and creating a tripping hazard, you may want to replace it. Some folks have taken to using adhesive strips on the bottoms of their rugs and the floors — that way, it’s harder for the rug to move and bunch up, so your older family members are safe.
Uncommon Household Dangers for Children
You may have heard of several dangers in your household — that’s why you keep cleaning chemicals and laundry detergent out of your child’s reach. You might encounter some other risks that your child could get into, so it’s essential to look at the uncommon dangers as much as the common ones, even if they don’t appear as often.
1. Poisoning Hazards
Everyone knows to keep chemicals out of the reach of children. One lesser-talked-about chemical, though, is paint. While you might be looking forward to your home improvement project, you may forget to put its components out of reach. Children might be likely to go for paint because of the vibrant colors and interesting consistency, so it’s best to keep it out of reach and locked away.
2. Strangling Hazards
For a creative child, nothing is off-limits when it comes to playing pretend. They might imagine that the strings on your blinds are snakes or vines in the jungle. It’s vital to secure these strings and any other loose cords to make sure your child doesn’t accidentally strangle themselves.
Electrical cords pose a double threat: both strangulation and electrocution. For your child’s safety, make sure they can’t easily access cables.
3. Appliance Hazards
An important rule that you should teach your child is to stay away from appliances when you’re not around. Without the proper guidance, a child may neglect to play with the stove but find hiding in the washing machine to be a perfect spot for hide-and-seek.
Either seek out appliances that automatically lock when tampered with, or find a way to teach your child when they’re young about the dangers of crawling into appliances, especially when you’re not around to keep an eye on them.
Prepare Your Home So You Can Relax
If you’re a new homeowner or a parent whose child likes to get into everything, finding uncommon things that could cause harm to your family is a must. Once your child is older, you may not have to worry so much about what they may accidentally come across. But you should always be aware of the risks some everyday household items pose to you and the other adults in your home.
Communicate effectively and take care of your family the best you can so your house always remains a home.