Infant and Child Safety Tips

Strangulation and Suffocation Prevention


Strangulation Prevention

Babies and children have been strangled by strings on clothing, cords, and infant furniture and accessories. Prevent strangulation by avoiding these sources and modifying certain items in your home, especially any item with drawstrings, ribbons, and cords:


  • Don't buy garments with drawstrings, which can catch on objects and strangle a child. Cut all drawstrings out of hoods, jackets, and waistbands in your child's wardrobe. Cut strings off mittens.
  • Clip strings or ribbons off hanging mobiles and other crib toys.
  • Strings on crib bumpers should be no longer than 6 inches.
  • Always tie up window blind cords so they are out of your child's reach. Cut the cords so there is no loop at the bottom, then secure them with clothespins or specially designed cord clips.
  • Don't let long telephone cords dangle to the floor.
  • Resist the temptation to put necklaces or headbands on your baby.
  • Never tie a pacifier around your baby's neck.
  • Don't tether a pacifier to your baby's clothing with a ribbon or piece of string.
  • Don't hang diaper bags or purses on cribs - a baby can become entangled in the straps or strings.

Suffocation Prevention


Because babies are not yet able to raise their heads, they need special protection from suffocation. Small children are also at risk, primarily due to plastic bags of all sizes. Protect your children from the dangers of suffocation by following these rules:


  • Never place an infant face down on soft bedding, such as a waterbed, quilt, sheepskin rug, or mattress cover. The same holds true for any type of soft pillow, such as a beanbag or bead-filled pillow. Avoid large stuffed animals.
  • Be sure that a crib mattress fits snugly in the crib. This keeps a baby from slipping in between the mattress and the crib sides.
  • Never put an infant down on a mattress covered with plastic or a plastic bag.
  • Promptly dispose of plastic shopping bags and plastic dry-cleaning bags. Tie several knots in each bag before throwing it out.
  • Keep plastic garbage bags and large sandwich-style plastic bags out of children's reach.
  • When cleaning up after a birthday party or holiday, pay special attention to all plastic bags from toy packaging. Collect them and throw them out immediately.



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