The number of children injured when furniture falls on them has jumped 40 percent over the past 20 years. Putting up gates isn't enough. Here are tips from Dr. Jim Schmidt, co-founder of the Virginia Beach, Va.-based company Child Safety House Calls:
- Tether it. Secure any potentially unstable furniture to the wall. Rock each piece to test if a toddler's weight could topple it, realizing that even heavy objects can fall if a child pulls or climbs on open drawers.
- Watch what's on top. Objects you know a child will want -- such as a toy or remote control -- will tempt them to climb.
Premium content for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
- Beware of coffee tables. Many are the perfect height for toddlers to whack their heads. Consider moving a table with sharp edges into storage, replacing it with a soft ottoman or covering it with a thick blanket whenever a child is around.
- Beware of choking hazards. Beads, rivets and wicker all can break off into small pieces. Go for hardwood furniture or upholstery without beading.