The hidden dangers inside your home that most new parents don't - KCTV5

The hidden dangers inside your home that most new parents don't think about

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KCTV5 is taking you room-by-room to show you just how dangerous the house can be for your kids if you don’t pay attention.  (KCTV5) KCTV5 is taking you room-by-room to show you just how dangerous the house can be for your kids if you don’t pay attention. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

KCTV5 is taking you room-by-room to show you just how dangerous the house can be for your kids if you don’t pay attention.

Doctors at Children’s Mercy said they see kids every day who get hurt inside homes due to hidden dangers most new parents do not think about. While you cannot baby-proof every room, doctors said you can start thinking in a smarter way.

“It’s overwhelming. It’s overwhelming. You have to look everywhere," said Amy Terreros, Children’s Mercy Hospital childhood safety manager.

Terreros says there are dangers everywhere in the home. She knows this not only through her role at the hospital, but also her role as a Mom to 3 kids.

“They’re 10, 7 and 5,” she said.

Through her time looking for hidden home dangers she said, by far, the biggest problem area, was the kitchen. Half of all home fires start in the kitchen according to the National Fire Protection Association.

“Kids are very very quick," Terreros said.

She recommends you always use the back burners on the stove when cooking and keep the handles facing backwards -- so kids can’t pull them down. She sees dozens of kids burned from boiling water, and a big one among teenagers is ramen noodles.  

Another danger in the kitchen is leaving the dishwasher open with utensils placed sharp side up.

“A young toddler who’s not steady on their feet can fall forward and you don’t want a knife pointing up,” Terrors added.

Dangerous chemicals are the next concern.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 90,000 kids are sent to the hospital for unintentional poisoning every year.

“Just last week, I had a patient come in who had eaten a laundry pod,” said Jennifer Lowry, a toxicologist at Children’s Mercy.

More than 5,000 kids will get sent to the emergency room every year due to the pods.

Lowry says it is easy to prevent, but most parents don’t take the necessary steps.

“Where do we put our Tupperware versus where to do put our chemicals," she said,

Lowry recommends storing the cleaning sprays and chemicals that could hurt kids above the fridge, rather than the common spot under the sink. Instead, put Tupperware under the sink where it won’t matter if kids get into it.

“Parents also need to get on their hands and knees to crawl around and see what their kids are seeing this is often where things get left under couches and tables, hidden from your sight – specifically medicine that looks like candy," Lowry said.

There is also something often overlooked in the bathroom.

Doctors warn that parents must make sure the home water temperature is 120 degrees.

A child can have 10 minutes of exposure set at 120 degrees before it burns. If the temperature climbs to 160 degrees it will only take half a second to cause a burn.

Doctors also warn that once the child is out of the tub drain you need to drain the water immediately to eliminate any drowning risk.

Last but not least, do not forget to eliminate the biggest danger in bedrooms. Tipping furniture, such as dressers and TVs, can crush a child.

“All of those things need brackets braces furniture straps to keep them from falling over. And windows – need special locks – that keep them from opening more than four inches,” Terrors said.

Free furniture straps can be found at CharliesHouse.org in memory of 2-year-old Charlie Horn who died after a dresser fell on him. 

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