Do you know how to baby proof a TV stand? If not, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Read on for tips to help you baby proof that entertainment center the easy way!
Most of us probably take for granted the TV stand or the entertainment center – once we build it, it serves its purpose. But did you know according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, a child dies every two weeks due to furniture or appliance tip-overs? Plus, televisions (and related furniture) are responsible for 70 percent of those accidents?
This is a scary wake-up-call for any parent. So let’s get busy and learn how to baby proof a TV stand and baby-proof the entertainment center so we can keep our little ones safe. Don’t worry, it’s easier than you probably think it is!
How to Baby Proof a TV Stand
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Clear the Clutter (Make it Baby-Boring)
This is a good starting point when it comes to baby proofing the tv cabinet – clear the clutter and make it baby-boring. Toddlers are incredibly visual beings so get rid of anything that could be perceived as “fun.” Knick-knacks, DVDs, game cases are all “toys” to be investigated for a busy kid, so remove them to keep your child’s focus on safer adventures.
Secure the Television
Falling televisions account for ten child-related deaths each year. There’s no need for this accident to occur when securing your television isn’t difficult to do. If you’ve been thinking about mounting it on the wall, having a child is a great motivator to do so. If you don’t have the proper spacing to wall-mount, there are excellent TV anchors that will do the trick.
If you’ve never seen a television anchor, they usually use screws or super-adhesive anchors that attach to your TV cabinet or wall. Straps then connect this point to your TV, making it less prone to falling over.
Secure Home By Jessa Leona uses only durable metal and heavy-duty straps to keep your television stable and tip-free. Perfect for both baby-proofing and pet-proofing your flat screen unit. Check it out here.
Lock ‘Em Up! (The Devices, Not the Baby)
If your entertainment center has doors utilize them by locking up your game consoles, DVD players. and cable boxes. The best way to do this is by using baby locks. If you can’t get a signal through the doors of your entertainment center, you can purchase a remote control extender. These devices sit next to the TV and send signals to electronics hidden from view. BAFX is a popular model used by pet parents, which can control up to eight devices.
Find the best locks for your TV stand in our guide to Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Baby Proofing Cabinets
Protect the Players
If protecting your players behind locked cabinets isn’t an option, then we suggest using electronic equipment safety straps. Although these are designed for earthquake action, they can double to protect your small electronics from the tugging of a toddler, too.
The Quakehold brand uses a strong adhesive that simply peels and presses onto the bottom of your electronics, securing them into place – if they can withstand a shift in Earth’s tectonic plates, they can withstand the pulling of a nosy toddler!
Do you have an Apple TV, Roku player, cable box and/or a DVD player? You can retrofit these devices with small Plexiglass strips that will cover the fronts, keeping those little fingers from pressing buttons or inserting any weird objects (or food) into the slots.
Hide the Remotes
Remotes to a toddler are like honey to bears; irresistible. Why not? They have lots of buttons to push, some light up, and, your little one has most likely watched you fiddling with it. Plus, you push the button and something happens – nirvana!
Unfortunately, the remote control can also be a hazard. The built-up gunk, batteries and battery compartment lid can and will end up in your child’s mouth. These aren’t only germ-filled, but the later can pose a choking risk.
In addition, baby drool can ruin the remote – leaving you with manually operating the TV. All those randomly pushed buttons can often change the settings, too (which are impossible to get back).
To keep Baby (and remote) safe, put them out of reach or hide then where your curious kid can’t find it (also works for husbands for those days when you’re just not in the mood for more sports!).
Cover the Corners (Prevent Bumps & Bruises)
Once your baby is crawling and walking, you will want to cover the corners of the entertainment center. These “sharp” edges are easy to fall into, especially for a wobbly baby, and can cause a bump, bruise or scrape.
The Hamptons Baby Caring Corner Guards are made from a flexible clear ball-shape that will snug up those sharp points, keeping your toddler safe to play.
Clean Up the Cords
If your entertainment center is anything like mine, there’s a mess of cords back there tangled up like angry Christmas tree lights. Inconvenient? Sure, but they can also be an invitation to explore for a busy baby.
Have you ever sat down to watch tv and nothing worked? Chances are your toddler has been back there playing “Cable guy” and has unplugged something. Not to mention, anything containing electricity should not be chewed or slobbered on.
What’s the solution? Invest in a cable manager – no it’s not a person – but rather a flexible sleeve that keeps your cords bundled up, organized and safe from those prying fingers. Joto makes one of a durable, stretchy neoprene that is sure to do the trick.
Plug Up the Outlets
Although our last baby-proofing tip isn’t directly related to the TV entertainment center, it does bear a mention. Plug up the outlets (before baby plugs them with food or a toy).
These are a necessity in our homes but are also a huge temptation for your curious toddler – have you ever really looked at an outlet? It resembles a face. One that is beckoning your baby to stuff something into its awaiting mouth.
Unfortunately, this poses a huge danger. In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association, approximately 2,400 children suffer from severe shock and burns caused by items being poked into the slots of electrical receptacles. Out of this number, approximately 12 children will die from injuries sustained during this accident.
For empty electrical outlets, use a baby-proof outlet cap to seal it up. These can be found at any major retailer or hardware store, are easy to use and inexpensive to purchase.
How to Baby Proof an Entertainment Center with Gates
Entertainment Center Baby Gate
Baby gates are one of those inventions that you didn’t know you couldn’t live without until you used one. But who would have thought this helpful device is now being utilized for an entertainment center? These types of baby gates are designed to be free-standing and in several sections to encompass the length and area you need to keep secure. They’re perfect for keeping your little one (or pet) out of the tv stand, entertainment center, fireplace, or for blocking off a large entranceway.
TV Stand Baby Guard
If you’re a DIY’er then you’ll be happy for this next way to baby-proof a TV stand – the homemade TV stand guard. Made with simple materials (self-adhesive Velcro and vinyl) this made-to-fit guard can be whipped up in a matter of minutes, looks great and is relatively inexpensive. Plus, it’s easy to clean – simply wipe away the debris. Check out the instructions here.
Make a Baby Friendly TV Stand
Not all TV stands are created equally. Let’s fact it, some are just more accessible to those tiny hands than others. For this reason, when you’re shopping for a baby-friendly tv stand, find one that uses plenty of cabinets and less open shelves. These will keep your valuables neatly and safely tucked away and are easily fastened with baby-proof locks.
An example of a baby-friendly TV stand is one made by WE Furniture. This TV stand is not only space-saving, but it keeps everything secured away behind two beautiful window cabinet doors.
How to Baby Proof Glass TV Stand
Are you worried your toddler may throw a toy at your tv stand and break the glass on the cabinet doors? Then try some Security Film (works on windows, too). This self-adhesive is tough-as-nails, and adds an impact resistant layer to your glass that will hold the glass together in case of an impact. It’s easy to apply and comes in a roll so you can cut-to-fit.
Baby-proof your entertainment center or tv stand to keep your child safe from injury. Clear up the clutter, make it baby-boring, secure the television, lock up the small electronics, hide the remote, cover those sharp corners, bundle up the cords and plug up the unused electrical outlets. These will all go a long way in keeping baby safe and giving you peace-of-mind.
If you’re a bit more industrious, you can make your own tv stand guard, use security film on the cabinet windows or place a baby gate to encompass the entire area. Of course, you can also save yourself a lot of time and hassle by purchasing a baby-proof tv stand that uses cabinets to keep your items safe-and-sound.