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How to protect your kids from common home hazards

Accidental injuries are the number one cause of death in kids and more than 1/3 happen at home. Now that more kids are remote learning at home, here are safety tips.

TOLEDO, Ohio — As parents, we want the best for our kids and that includes protecting them from those common home safety hazards. 

According to KidsHealth.org, accidental injury is the number one cause of death in kids, with more than a third happening at home. That includes drowning, burns, accidental poisoning and choking.

Some of the blame, at least recently, is due to more kids being at home due to the pandemic and parents being more distracted as they juggle home life and work.

Nicole Knepper with Mercy Health's Trauma & Burn Outreach says kids often get hurt, simply because they're still figuring things out.

"They're curious people, they learn by touching things," Knepper says, "so anything really that's left within their reach, if they're not being watched closely, can be dangerous."

To help protect those curious children, Knepper says you can start by monitoring playtime as much as possible, keeping sharp utensils out of reach, and placing a child lock on a cupboard where you can store cleaning products, laundry detergent and other similar items.

"We call them pretty poisons, but they're things that look like something that might be good, so a lot of times when we advertise things, we want it to look pretty, we want it to look nice, but those things can be really dangerous to kids."

Knepper also says Mercy is seeing an increase in kids in the hospital for burns and other injuries, and because they have thinner skin, kids burn worse than adults. 

We also tend to fill our home with items that look good but can also be dangerous, such as baskets, storage boxes and throw rugs which can potentially lead to trips and falls.

And although they're a loved member of the family, pets can also injury a child, often by accident if they get a bit rowdy and knocking them over or playful nips that may go too far.