When children with special needs live in a home, there are specific safety precautions that should be taken in order to ensure their health and safety. Often, as a child with special needs grows, they will become more independent and capable of accomplishing tasks on their own. Unfortunately, this also means that they will sometimes need additional care in order to make sure that they are in a safe environment for them to explore and interact. Children with special needs also may need special care in the event of an emergency. Therefore, the following tips are provided in order to help anyone who lives or works with a child with special needs to be able to provide them with an optimum environment to keep them safe.
In the home, falls are one of the primary causes of injuries every day. Therefore, parents of children with special needs will want to take steps to prevent falls by making sure that floors are clear of toys and other objects that may cause a person to trip. Additionally, they will need to install gates at the tops and bottoms of stairs that a child with special needs should not access without help. Finally, installing handrails and other accessibility devices throughout the home can provide a helpful way for children with special needs to accomplish their daily tasks with support to prevent a fall.
Have a Fire Plan
Children with special needs should be taught what to do in a fire according to their understanding and abilities. Because some children may require help evacuating in the event of a fire, a specific adult should be designated as responsible for helping the child to get out of the home safely. Then, a fire drill should be practiced exactly as the plan states so that the child will know what to expect. Additionally, children with special needs should also be taught fire safety that is specific to their impairment. For example, children who have auditory impairments should also be taught how to look for flashing lights or other visual signals that warn of a fire.
While many people tend to think of drowning as something that only happens in swimming pools and lakes, the unfortunate truth is that bath tubs can be just as dangerous for babies and children with special needs. In order to prevent drowning, it is important for a parent or caregiver to stay near the child when they are bathing. Additionally, installing handrails can help a child to have more support. Children with special needs should also be taught to never go swimming alone. For additional protection, swimming pools should be protected with a locked gate and any accessible doors should be locked as well.
Keeping a home safe is important for ensuring the health of every person who lives in a house. However, children with special needs may also require some extra precautions. By keeping the floor clear, practicing a fire safety plan and teaching children about water safety, a family can be certain that their home will be safe for their child with special needs.
For more information on home safety and security, visit Essential Fire Safety.