Being a loving, devoted, and prudent parent in this day and age can be a tough challenge even when you’re living in a harmonious marriage with your significant other. However, if you have been forced to divorce your spouse and are now facing the challenge of single parenthood, this can seem like an insurmountable task. While you might be able to benefit from co-parenting, there is no denying that being a single mom or dad brings numerous troubles to mind. One of the most basic and troubling thoughts that might come to mind is, of course, how to ensure the safety of your child at all times. This is why it is crucial to know certain child safety essentials.
Now, you can’t expect to watch over your kid at all times, and there is no way to prevent an occasional slip and fall, but for the most part, you can make a solid plan to ensure their safety. If you’re a single parent, let’s go over the five child safety essentials you should know in order to put your mind at ease knowing that your child is safe and secure in your care.
5 Key Child Safety Essentials You Should Know
Child Safety During COVID-19
First things first, let’s address the most pressing issue you’re probably thinking about all the time – the COVID-19 pandemic. There is no denying that the coronavirus crisis presents a real threat to the health of your child, but even more so to your own well-being, as children are more resilient to the virus than adults. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t potent carriers, though, and your child could carry the virus into your home if they’re not adhering to social distancing and hygiene rules.
Whether your child is learning online or goes to school, it is imperative that they wear a mask at all times while out of the house and maintain a healthy distance from other people. Be sure to explain to them the importance of regularly washing their hands as well as cleaning their surroundings with disinfectants on a regular basis if possible. This way, you will minimize the risk of infection and keep your family safe.
Out of Sight, Out of Reach
A common worry among single parents, especially immediately after separation, is that they simply won’t be able to prevent their child from reaching for something they aren’t supposed to touch, which can lead to a nasty injury or a life-threatening condition. While the thought alone is enough to keep you up at night, there’s a simple solution to your problem that will work 99 percent of the time – just keep everything they shouldn’t touch out of reach.
Put dangerous items on high shelves, lock the cabinetry and keep all sharp items in drawers under lock and key. Don’t tempt your child to play with dangerous things but encourage them to explore and realize where the limits are. When they reach a locked cabinet or drawer, use the opportunity to teach them about the importance of privacy and why they should respect certain boundaries.
Ensure Your Child’s Safety While Driving
While you might be focused on your child’s safety at home, you shouldn’t forget about the perils that may await out on the open road. It is imperative that you secure your vehicle and make it safe for your child on all fronts, and the first step is to research convertible car seats to find the manufacturers that have been approved by professionals and parents alike. Do not sacrifice safety for affordability, but instead invest in a durable, high-quality car seat that will ensure your child is safe at all times while you’re driving.
What’s more, make sure that there is nothing your child can reach with his or her hands and feet while riding in the back, and be sure to enable child lock on the back doors as well. Take your car to the mechanic regularly to ensure proper driving conditions as well.
Keep Emergency Contacts in Plain Sight
If you have a toddler or a baby, then you need to keep all emergency contacts in your phone and at your side at all times, just in case. However, if your child is a bit older, in their pre-teens or teen years, then you need to make sure that they know and have all emergency contacts in their phones or written down on a piece of paper they can carry with them. You never know what might happen while you’re at work or even at home without you being able to respond, which means that your child will need to know who to call at a moment’s notice.
Help Your Child Feel Safe At Home
Lastly, you have to make sure that your child is feeling safe and secure at your side and in your home at all times. Whether you have an abusive and aggressive ex, or if your teen has developed anxiety after your divorce, your task is to make your child feel safe and loved. This requires plenty of love and affection on your end, but it also requires some concrete solutions.
Be sure to install parental locks on all devices and enable child protection settings on browsers and social media networks to prevent cyberbullying. You can install security cameras on the inside and outside of your home to make your child feel safer, and you can even introduce an automated emergency system. Connect all security systems to your phone so that you always know what’s going on when you’re out.
Being a single parent is a difficult task, but that doesn’t mean that you are powerless against the numerous challenges you’re facing. Be sure to follow these safety tips to keep your child out of harm’s way while building a trusting and loving bond.
Lilly Miller is a Sydney-based graphic designer and a passionate writer. She loves everything about home decor, art history, and baking. She shares a home with two loving dogs and a gecko named Rodney.