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How to Keep Your Furniture Safe from the Kids (and Vice-Versa)

Children are a joy and lots of fun, there energy and exuberance contagious. Children are also generally rambunctious and really bad at not breaking things, and it’s not always there fault. Youth means less developed motor functions, and that means clumsiness. This tends to become apparent in the teen years when puberty starts causing kids to drop stuff randomly. It can also mean a hard time keeping the furniture in good shape.

Kids and Furniture

This question probably brings to mind grandma’s squeaky sofa covered in a plastic force field. While effective for the prevention of stains, it’s not very comfortable. This solution’s other major drawback is it doesn’t work for wood furniture. Wooden furniture requires special care to avoid stains, dents, and scratches, and making sure it’s safe from the kids is only one concern. Wood can be heavy after all, and hitting a knee or foot against an oak table leg can hurt.

Child-proofing furniture, just like the rest of the house, might be a tall order, but there are easy ways to keep the children safe and most of the furniture secure. Fastening shelves, drawers, and the like so they stay put is a good idea. A good sturdy wooden shelf can get pretty top heavy, and that can be dangerous when kids are around, especially if they need to reach something on a higher shelf. Placing heavier items closer to the ground, or putting them where kids can’t get to them all, is also a good idea. Children, especially young children, will try and grab toys or other fun looking objects, and that can mean crawling onto furniture to get at them. Keeping furniture clear of such temptations will help keep the kids safe, and that helps keep the furniture safe as well.

A lot of child safety with furniture can be designed around modern plastics and cables. Older style furniture is admittedly not very child-friendly, what with the heavy wood, sharp edges, and difficulty to move around in the event of an emergency. Safety is possible, and part of any good safety measure is education.

Though it can be difficult with younger kids, making sure they understand the potential dangers of furniture based injury is always a good idea. Granted they’re unlikely to get the idea until they actually hurt themselves, but it’s a start. Regardless of what you say or what happens, the furniture is going to be abused by the children at some point. Sturdy wooden furniture usually doesn’t have a lot of give to it, so in theory the mischief will be limited. If nothing else, though, children will try and climb over couch’s, chairs, and potentially tables.

While a solid wooden based couch is pretty hefty and hard to move, that can also make them potentially dangerous. As noted before, wood can hurt. Placing couches against walls will help reduce the entry points for aspiring climbers. Making sure other furniture is away from the couch can help prevent hopping from chair to couch, always a danger when kids are involved. Providing plenty of open space for the children to run around will help mitigate stubbed toes and elbows banging into chair arms.

One way to mitigate potential damage is to make sure the children have specific spaces where they can play and roam about. Including or excluding furniture from this is up the individual, but couches make great boats, mountains, and the like, so if it’s safe then it can make for a great addition to any childhood adventure. Supervision is key of course, regardless of where the children are playing but especially if they do so in a room with potentially dangerous furniture. Fortunately, kids only have so much reach, and generally anyplace four feet or higher off the ground is considered a great place to get in some thorough decorating. While that doesn’t mean much for furniture, it is worth considering when organizing shelves, cabinets, and the like. As noted before, placing heavy items closer to the ground will lessen the risk of injury, but can increase the chance of breakage. Lighter items that you want out of the children’s reach are best placed someplace secure. If the kids are a little older, though, then it won’t be as big an issue. The age group of the kids plays a large part in the potential risks of furniture and decorative items, though even adults can accidently hurt themselves now and then.

Wooden furniture can really make for a great decoration and utility, but when kids are involves it’s durability and sturdy nature might hurt them more than it hurts the furniture. Making sure the kids have safe room to play always helps, but wood is hard, and it can hurt. This is true of kids and adults, so whatever preparations are in place, be prepared for injuries and make sure that everyone has a good time –preparing for injuries doesn’t mean they have to happen, after all.

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