Child safety is an important area of concern for all parents. Teaching the child about safety in her surroundings is one of the primary responsibilities of parents. Thus, child safety training should commence as soon as the child starts moving around the place on her own.
The key reason why your child faces dangers is her overwhelming curiosity to explore her surroundings. However, she is not capable of determining what is safe for her. So, you must take the necessary precautions to ensure child safety from all potential hazards. An older child is likely to understand if you explain your concerns to her. However, remember that even with the highest degree of precaution, your child is prone to have minor accidents.
Tips to Teach Your Child Safety Measures
Here are some tips to teach your child safety measures:
- Keep very small objects such as marble or other curio items out of your very young child's reach. She may pop them into her mouth and start choking.
- Show your child safe places to play. Avoid dangerous places such as the staircase, the top of the furniture and the edge of the bed. You may consider allowing her to play in such places only under your supervision. With an older child, tell her that she is not supposed to play on busy roads and why it is not safe to do so.
- If anyone asks your child to accompany him, teach her to get your permission first. It is essential to do this irrespective of if she knows the caller or not.
- Make sure that your child tells you about someone who touches her and and asks her not to mention this to you. To do this, you must make her aware of her body parts and which are private.
- Play “What If” games with your child to help him understand different safety levels.
- Help your child understand that it is not safe to play with certain objects and that she must necessarily keep off them at all times. These include electrical appliances, sharp kitchen objects and so on.
- Ensure that your slightly older child knows her full name, address and telephone number very well. But, help her understand that she should not give these out to strangers.
- Tell your child to say NO to a person who asks her to do something that she is afraid of doing.
- Create various make-believe situations that can help your child understand the importance of safety.
- Never allow your child to play in the bathroom unattended. A bucket full of water is enough for your child to fall into and drown herself.
- Make your child understand that it is not alright to throw things around. People can get hurt when they are hit by objects.
- Assure her that you will still love her even if she tells you about someone hurting her.
- Teach your child not to accept food or drinks from people whom she does not know. Teach her to say that she should ask you first and move away from the place.
- When crossing the road, tell your child that she must hold on to your hand. If she refuses, ask her to do it for your safety.
- Tell your child that it is safe for children to travel in a child safe seat. Also, show her how you fasten your seat belt to make her understand the importance of fastening hers.
- Read books to your child that provide illustrations of how to keep oneself safe. A book with pictures will help her grasp the facts faster.
- If she wanders away from you in a public place and is not able to find you, teach her to wait for you at a common place that both of you decide on earlier. For example, tell her to wait for you at the cashier's place in the grocery store if she moves away from you and cannot find you.
- Help your child name and trust her feelings. This can help her recognise for herself the situations that do not make her feel safe.
- Teach your child to watch both sides of the road and move on to the other side only if both sides are clear.
- With older children, you can teach them to be kind to animals. Tell your child that animals hate being teased just like humans. Make her understand that animals generally mean no harm unless they are provoked.
- Explain to your child that touching the vessels on the stove can be hot and burn her.
- Set yourself as a role model. For example, if a stranger knocks at your door, show your child how you sent him away without allowing him inside.
- Show your child how to care for others if they are hurt. You can show your child how you applied a bandage on your wound when you cut yourself accidentally.
Children by instinct have a natural affinity towards songs and music. Here is a collection of wonderful songs that you can sing to your child to teach her about safety.
Finally, remember that supervision is the best way to ensure child safety. This does not mean you should over protect her and prevent her from doing something that will not harm her. As she grows up, give her the freedom to explore her surroundings as you continue to enforce safety limits on her. And, you must always be calm if an unexpected mishap occurs. Children usually get upset if they see their parents worried. Keep a first aid kit ready. Provide immediate treatment at home and take her to the hospital as fast as you can.