Safety and Care: Kids in the Kitchen II

Monday, May 28, 2007

Posted by Meeta K. Wolff

The kitchen can be a very dangerous place for the younger ones on our lives. Toddlers and small children are very inquisitive and in their innocence will try anything lying open or pull anything that is within their reach.

Due to this reason the many points and guidelines focusing on safety and care in the kitchen when kids are around, cannot be stated often enough.

This is a pretty sensitive subject for me personally. My brother was involved in a kitchen accident at the age of 3. Today he is 32 and still suffers from the issues that plague him from this accident. One day he ran into the kitchen where our house-help was boiling water. She was not in the kitchen at the time my brother ran into the kitchen. Unfortunately the pot was a little too close to the edge and in his haste he managed to somehow pull the whole pot onto himself. He had third degree burns and a suffering of a life time. Surgeries and plastic surgeries, therapy and rehab followed. Till today he has not "healed". In his head he sometimes still fights certain demons that follow him.

So, writing this post is a bit difficult, but at the same time a bit satisfying. Satisfying because I hope my experience might help others who read this.

With just a few simple steps you can make the kitchen a safer place for your children. Prevention is the key word that will help you to avoid injuries, burns, and even fatality.

  • Keep the pot and pan handles always turned to the back. This will keep children from intentionally or unintentionally pull them down from the stove and causing burns or other serious injuries.

  • Be sure that children cannot climb on top of counters or cabinets. Tablecloths and other such hanging placements should be removed or kept out of range of your toddlers or small children. This prevents them form pulling things down onto themselves.

  • Keep hot items at a safe distance. Never place anything hot on the edge of the counter. When moving hot items around make sure your toddler or small child is not in your way. It is safer to keep toddlers in a playpen or highchair when cooking in the kitchen, instead of allowing them to crawl on the floor.

  • When opening the oven doors make sure that your child is not anywhere nearby. A toddler may unintentionally grab for the oven door and burn himself/herself.

  • Microwaves should be placed out of reach for children. The best place for it is in between the wall cabinets.

  • Use a microwave door lock to keep the microwave locked.

  • Make sure the containers or formulas bottles that come out of the microwave are not hot. Let them to cool before allowing your children to handle them.

  • Keep all appliances and their cords tucked away neatly. Allowing them to dangle over the counter top may cause children to pull them down from the counter.

  • Plastic plug protectors are the perfect way to prevent tiny fingers sticking into the sockets. All sockets accessible to toddlers or small children should be protected with such plastic plug protectors.

  • When older children are in the kitchen helping out, supervise them and never leave them out of sight.

  • Keep sharp objects out of all children's reach. Knives should be placed in knife blocks and stored towards the back of the counter.

  • Detergents, washing liquids and other cleaning material should be stored in a cabinet above the sink and not below the sink.

I have a wonderful online learning game I play with Soeren every now and then. It is called Welcome to Welltown. In Welltown your children will learn how to stay healthy and keep themselves safe by doing certain activities. A playful way to teach them such important lessons. We too spend our time in Welltown and often we focus on Kitchen Safety. Hope you and your children enjoy playing the game.

Review your kitchen with a sharp eye and make it a safe place for your children. Although you will find these points obvious and you might have often seen them it is so vital to take them into consideration before something really happens.

Further resources:
Kitchen Safety for children on their own
Kitchen Safety Fire Prevention in the Kitchen

I would also like to thank Asha and Sharmi for contributing to our Safety in the Kitchen month.

You will also find valuable information from our own Daily Tiffin team on out theme this month - Safety & Care. Each member shared helpful and important information for various topics, which should be actually be bookmarked for future reference.

We wish you a safe and accident free week.

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Are you interested in contributing to The Daily Tiffin? Drop us an email: We look forward to hearing your ideas.

This Post was written by Meeta from What's For Lunch, Honey?


Hi Meeta - very informative article. I feel so badly for your brother - and the worst part is that these accidents never happen from malice intent - just a moment of not paying attention.

I think the idea of games such as Welcome to Welltown are great ideas! Our company does some work on games to teach children about electrical safety - I figure every bit of knowledge helps, right?

Anonymous said...
May 28, 2007 at 5:52:00 PM GMT+2  

Yes, it does. It's really like learning for an exam - unless we repeat things to ourselves sometimes things never stick in our heads.

These games are a fantastic way of getting children to playfully learn the importance of such issues. Companies like yours that work on such games really need to be thanked for their wonderful work!

Meeta K. Wolff said...
May 29, 2007 at 8:35:00 AM GMT+2  

see, this is a beautiful post by itself!

Shah cooks said...
May 29, 2007 at 1:25:00 PM GMT+2  

I can relate to what happened to your brother: I was 10 and carrying a pot of boiling water to the tea kettle. It was one of those detachable T-Fal handle and pot sets that my mom loves because they stack up easily in the cupboard. Well, the handle got lose and the water ended up on m legs, lycra tights and shoes. I was burned pretty bad and it took about 20 years for the most visible scar to go away. When i get out of the shower or get a tan that area of my leg gets darker first.
I always have to take a minute, examine the kitchen and put myself in a kid's shoes when I hve friends over with their young ones. One look away and the damage is done.
Thanks for a great post!

Helene said...
June 3, 2007 at 8:29:00 AM GMT+2  

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