Baby proofing your entire home entails securing stairs, doors, medicine, windows, and more.

Whole House Baby Proofing Checklist

There are many baby proofing tasks that don't necessarily fit into a specific room category. Blocking stairs is a great example of this. Then, there are baby proofing tasks that fit into multiple rooms, like covering electric outlets. That's where the "Whole House" category comes to the rescue. This page will highlight the baby proofing tasks that might be missed in other areas, but are still really important to do. Check out the list of baby proofing tasks below that have your kiddo's age group highlighted.

Electrical Stairs Doors Medicine Windows Furniture Miscellaneous

Installing outlet covers is a cheap and easy way to protect your child from electric shock.

Cover Outlets

Cover Outlets

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Outlets...electric sources at a crawler's height. Perfect. What could go wrong?! *facepalm* Outlet covers are probably in the top three most popular baby proofing activities, and for good reason. They're super cheap and as easy to install as something gets, and they keep your baby away from feeling an electric zap. Sounds like a win-win-win to me! I recommend buying a ton of these things and putting them in every outlet in your home that doesn't already have something plugged into it..

Hiding electric cords ensures your child won't be able to unplug cords and gain access to outlets and other power sources.

Hide Electric Cords

Hide Electric Cords

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Hiding electric cords is what I call a win-win. First, and most importantly, it keeps your kiddos from playing with the cords, which could get pulled out of the wall and expose the outlet, or get wrapped around their neck. Second, it is much neater looking than just letting the cords lay on the ground in plain site. If your electric cords are behind heavy furniture and out of reach of little ones, I wouldn't worry about it. But, if you have cords under an end table or entertainment center that are reachable by little arms, I highly suggest corralling them!

Using outlet cord locks will prevent your child from unplugging cords and gaining access to an open outlet.

Lock Cords to Outlets

Lock Cords to Outlets

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Outlets get a lot of attention in the baby proofing world, as they should. Unfortunately, most people forget about securing outlets that have something plugged into them. They forget that kids can easily pull cords out of the wall, which opens up an outlet for them to insert fingers, toys, you name it. My favorite solution is the plastic dome. All you do is replace the outlet face plate with the special one that comes with your dome, plug in your cords and clip the dome onto the face of the outlet. Just like that, your cords are secure.

GFCI outlets are an absolute necessity around water sources to prevent electric shock.

Install GFCI Outlets

Install GFCI Outlets

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Water an electric don't mix. This is one of the basic principles GFCI outlets (the ones with the little buttons between the plugs) are made for. Any time outlets are near a water source--mostly in the bathroom and kitchen--there's a risk for the water and electric to meet. GFCI outlets help prevent shock by shutting off the electric to the outlet immediately when anything interferes with the electric current inside of them--like a drop of water. Hopefully these are already installed around the sinks in your home. If they are, discussion over. If they're not, I highly recommend having an electrician install them for you. I believe they're even coded requirements in a lot of areas.

Light switch guards are really helpful if you have a toddler or big kid who likes to play with light switches.

Cover Light Switches

Cover Light Switches

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Have you ever seen those houses that have a Christmas light show set to music around the holidays? I'm convinced those are the houses that have toddlers that just learned they can reach light switches. Thankfully buying a small plastic guard isn't going to break your bank, and installing them takes less than five minutes. That was easy!


Baby Proofing Stairs

Baby gates are one of the quickest and easiest ways to dramatically improve the safety of your child.

Set Up Baby Gates

Set Up Baby Gates

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Baby gates. The classic baby proofing staple. Having well-placed baby gates prevent you from having to baby proof every single room in your house. The best strategy is to have a room like a living room where your kiddos will spend all of their time when they're not in bed, eating, or in the bath, baby proof that one room thoroughly, and put up a gate restricting your kiddo's escape from that room. When gating steps, be sure to use a wall-mounted variety at the top of the stairs and not the pressure-mounted kind. You don't want to risk a pressure mounted gate failing at the top of the stairs and having your little one tumble to the bottom.

Install a banister guard to keep your child from slipping through stair railings and banisters.

Install Banister Guards

Install Banister Guards

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Some kids love to be up high. If you have a banister in your house, especially one on the second floor overlooking the first floor, it is likely to draw your little one's attention. Even if they can't fit between the spindles, they may find it amusing to drop things from that height--toys, clothes, cats. Installing a banister guard can save you a lot of headache in the long run. If you prefer to not go this route, I highly suggest installing gates that restrict access to the banister area.

Installing foot grips on hardwood stairs will help prevent you and your child from slipping and falling on steps.

Install Foot Grips on Steps

Install Foot Grips on Steps

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

If you have wooden steps in your house, you and your children are at risk of slipping and falling. I recommend putting grips of some sort on the steps to make it easier on you when you're tired, or have your hands full as parents commonly are/do. This is recommended for all ages because you don't want to slip and fall down the stairs when you're carrying your infant. I personally know a couple of people who have fallen down stairs carrying their baby and both of their kids ended up with serious head injuries.


Baby Proofing Doors

Door pinch guards are the go-to baby proofing task for protecting little fingers from moving doors.

Install Door Pinch Guards

Install Door Pinch Guards

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

When it comes little fingers get in the way of a closing door, the doors almost always win. Pinch guards flip that script and protect your little one's digits. Be sure to consider pinch guards that protect both the handle and hinge sides of frequently used doors in your home.

Using door knob and handle locks keep your little one away from entering unprotected rooms or closets.

Restrict Door Access

Restrict Door Access

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

When your little one is tall enough to reach door handles, or even strong enough to push open a sliding door, you really need to consider restricting their ability to open certain doors in your home (front door, back door, basement door, garage door, etc. There are many products available to foil your kiddo's attempt to open any door you can imagine, so grab one and secure your doors!


Keeping Kids Away From Medicine

Tracking medicine doses as you give them will prevent you from over or under medicating your child.

Track Medicine Consumption

Track Medicine Consumption

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

"Hey honey did you already give Sally her medicine this morning?" "Yes. Or was that yesterday?" A conversation like this happens every day in thousands of homes all over the world. Giving a child their medicine ususally takes just a few minutes and can easily blur together from one day to the next. The solution? Write down every time you give your child their medicine. It doesn't have to be fancy, a post-it will work.

A trash can lock will help keep your child away from gross and/or harmful items that have been discarded.

Lock Medicine

Lock Medicine

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Securing all medication in your home is critically important once your little ones are mobile. Crawlers, toddlers, and big kids are all at risk of finding and consuming medication on their own, unless you make the effort to keep it up high and (preferably) locked up. It may seem like an inconvenience to have to unlock a box or cabinet just to take your meds, but it is definitely worth your time.

Preparing a list of your child's medication & alergies makes it much easier to give the information to first responders.

Make List of Allergies & Medications

Make List of Allergies & Medications

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

If you, your child, or anyone else in your home ever has a medical emergency, medical professionals will want to know if he/she has any allergies, and what (if any) medications they are taking. Having a list already made means that all you have to do is pass that list onto the medical professionals and you don't have to remember it when you're dealing with an undoubtably scary situation. 


Baby Proofing Windows

Window locks allow you to open your windows up enough to get air flow, but not enough that your child could falling out.

Lock Windows

Lock Windows

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

The window locks this refers to are those that allow you to open the window enough to let air in/out but not enough for a child to fit through. A lot of newer windows have a little plastic piece that can flip out of the frame and will stop the window from being opened more than about 4-6 inches. If your windows don't have this feature, I highly recommend you getting a clip that suctions to the window. This is definitely one of those products that are super cheap and easy to install, but are incredibly valuable when it comes to keeping your kiddo safe.

Window gates help prevent your child from falling out an open window, even when a screen is being used.

Use Open Window Gates

Use Open Window Gates

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

It is possible to open your windows all the way up and still prevent your little joey from falling out. A window screen is not enough to prevent your child from falling out a window, but a window gate is. These are very similar to the gates you're likely installing around the rest of your house, but they are specially made to fit in the frame of an open window. They allow for a lot of air flow, but prevent your kiddo from falling out.

Anti-shatter film on your low-level windows and glass doors will keep sharp glass off of your child if the glass is broken.

Install Anti-Shatter Glass Film

Install Anti-Shatter Glass Film

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

This might be one of the least thought of baby proofing tasks, but it actually makes a lot of sense. If you have a sliding glass patio door, a glass storm door, or even windows lower to the ground, this task is for you! Regardless of how the door or window might be broken, pieces of glass falling on or near your little one are extremely dangerous. Installing a shatter proof film on all the lower glass in your home will help keep pieces of glass falling near your kids in the event of a break.

Using a window blind cord wrap keeps long curtain cords out of reach of your child, making your windows safer.

Keep Window Blind Cords Out of Reach

Keep Window Blind Cords Out of Reach

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Kiddos tend to find the oddest things incredibly amusing, don't they? Window blind cords are definitely one of those odd, yet oh-so-interesting things for little ones. I don't get it, but then again, I don't eat my boogers either. Either way, keeping those window blind strings out of reach of your kiddos is a good idea. One of my daughters used to try to swing on the blind strings like Tarzan. She certainly yelled like him, but was never as graceful and our blinds always paid the price. Plus, the threat of the strings getting wrapped around your child's neck is there too.


Baby Proofing Furniture

Furniture straps are a key componant to ensuring your top-heavy furniture doesn't tip over onto your child.

Secure Furniture to Walls

Secure Furniture to Walls

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Here's the tragic story we've all heard on the news. Toddler wants something on the dresser but is too short to reach it. So, they pull out the bottom drawer to stand on so they can reach their desired object. Their weight and leverage tips the whole dresser over and crushes the toddler. This can all be prevented by getting some simple furniture straps that connect your furniture to the wall. Make sure you do this with all taller furniture that is taller than your kiddo and could really hurt them if it falls over--and don't forget your TV!

Furniture bumper guards keep your child from injury should they fall into a hard edge or corner.\

Install Furniture Bumper Guards

Install Furniture Bumper Guards

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Most furniture in any home such as coffee tables, end tables, book shelves, entertainment centers, etc. have one thing in common. They have sharp corners that are at a perfect height for little ones to run into. Ouch. Thankfully, furniture bumper guards were made with this problem in mind. So in just a few minutes, you can dramatically reduce the risk of cuts, bumps, and bruises involving the furniture in your home.


Miscellaneous Baby Proofing Tasks

Locking firearms, especially when children are present is of grave importance.

Secure Firearms

Secure Firearms

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

This is for everyone, even if you don't have firearms in your home. If you frequently take your little one to a friend or family member's home, be sure they have any firearms or weapons locked up too--at least while you and your kiddo are around. If you have firearms (or other weapons) and children of any age in your home, you should lock up your firearm or other weapons. The preferred method is having the firearm locked in one safe box, and all of the ammunition locked in a different safe box. You cannot be too safe with this.

Baby proofing your home includes keeping hazards out of reach.

Keep Hazards Out of Reach

Keep Hazards Out of Reach

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Baby proofing your home is not a one-and-done activity. It's constantly being aware of what is in your home and making sure that any hazardous objects are out of your child's reach. Things like small objects that could fit in your little one's mouth, sharp objects, strings/cords, heavy objects on tables that could be pulled onto your baby, plastic shopping bags, cleaning substances, and more. Even though you may have baby gates and bumper guards in place, it is still important that you remain vigilant of hazardous objects within your baby's reach.

Watch For Baby Product Recalls

Look Out For Recalls

  Newborn       Crawler       Toddler      Big Kid  

Keeping up with recalls on your baby or kid products is an important--and often overlooked--part of baby proofing your home. If you happen to be one of the parents that actually fill out the little recall notice post card when you buy a new product--good on you! For the rest of us, how do we know if one of our baby items has an active recall on it? The best way is to check out our Baby and Child Product Recalls page to see if there are any recalls on products you currently own or are planning to buy. 



Development Levels


  Infant    Starts at birth | Ends when first mobile, 6-10 months*

  Crawler    Starts when first mobile, 6-10 months* | Ends First independent walking | 10-14 months*

  Toddler   Starts First independent walking | 10-14 months* | Ends around 4 years old.*

  Big Kid   Starts around 4 years old* | Ends when you feel your child can operate safely in your home without special safety measures.

*Ages based on averages.
Get more Development Level information here.

Special Note

You know your home, your child(ren), and your situation the best, so please use your own judgement about what baby proofing techniques and products work for you. The tips and suggestions on this site can help you make safety decisions, but they should not make safety decisions for you.