The home should be a place of safety where children can play and learn. That is why, as parents and adults, we do everything we can to keep the home environment safe. We will never be able to watch over them 100% of the time, but we can lessen the risks in our homes through a number of different ways. One particular way is in our window coverings. We install them for safety and privacy, often without knowing that blinds themselves can potentially present safety hazards to our children.
Blinds can be very attractive. They can make the windows look more sophisticated, unique, and conforming to the style of home you live in. However, there are certain types of blinds that are only fine in places without young children playing around. That is why adults, especially parents, must really think hard and carefully before choosing which type of window blinds to install. The safety of the children living in our homes should be the number one thing to consider when purchasing blinds
Thankfully, there are child safe blinds available on the market! With these options, people can make their homes look great with awesome blinds without worrying about the safety of the children living with us.
Why do you need Child Safe Blinds?
Young children aren’t completely aware of the dangers that surround them at home. This is one of the reasons why adults should take the necessary precautions and provide them with the safest and most secure environment possible.
You might be looking at your wonderful window blinds right now and wonder, “how could these things endanger young children?” While certain types of blinds can end up causing more harm than others, parents need to be aware of these risks..
Blinds can get heavy depending on what style you choose. Heavy blinds could fall on children and cause them serious harm. This can end up happening when blinds aren’t installed properly. To negate the risk of blinds falling, always ensure to follow the instructions or get a professional to install them for you.
The dangers relating to blinds might be so much smaller than you think! The part of the blinds that brings the most risk to children is their cords. For adults,the cord on our blinds is just a tool we casually use to adjust them. We pull on it mindlessly, just like any other object we are accustomed to using repeatedly. Unfortunately, that is not the case for curious children.
What Does The Research Say?
In the United States of America, 183 window blind-cord-related fatalities have been recorded by the JAMA network. Further mote, a whopping 86% of recorded were caused by the pull cord of Venetian blinds. The same report indicated that the majority of infant victims were strangled while they were napping. On the other hand, most of the toddler victims were strangled either while jumping or falling from certain heights.
Western New York Urology Associates lists suffocation as one of the results of main causes of children requiring medical treatments. It also leads to substantial absenteeism for children. At times, it can also lead to permanent injuries.
According to a news article from Reuters Health, about 17,000 children under the age of six have been treated for blind-related injuries over the past few years. Many of these children accidentally got the cord from the blinds wrapped around their necks.
The sad part is that two-thirds of these strangulation cases resulted in fatalities. A study from the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio found that children continue to die from the cords on window blinds.
The same article from Reuters Health also revealed that a huge portion of these reports indicated that children sustained:
- Head injuries
These statistics are just the cases that were treated and reported. There is a good chance that these statistics are even higher, but some cases are not reported. For these reasons, parents are encouraged to be picky with their blinds. Responsible people should not only consider the beauty of their blinds but also consider the risks they bring to children.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) revealed that there have been 600 reports of young children being treated for blind-related injuries in American emergency rooms yearly.
According to the Community Practitioner, there has also been a case of a 31-month-old infant who nearly killed himself after accidentally hanging by a window blind’s cord.
Another report from BMJ Journals Archive of Diseases in Childhood told of a very alarming and similar story. After being absent for just four minutes, a mother found her 22-month infant being strangled while hanging from a window blind cord.
Did you know that even closed windows and blinds still present risks to children? This is according to AAP’s analysis of the data gathered by the National Electronic Surveillance from 1990 to 2015.
Is There Any Legislation Around The Child Safe Blinds?
It is unfortunate that even though children were already getting injured in the early 2000s, there was no legislation in place yet. The legislation was put into place by the year 2009, but it only imposed limited requirements on window blind manufacturers. It wasn’t until 2014 that legislation started to provide more detailed requirements to manufacturers.
What Were Those Requirements?
The introduced legislation required that blinds either have no accessible cord or be supplied with child safety devices that must be fitted as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Either The customer or a professional fitter is required to adhere by these guidelines. This was done to avoid children’s strangulation.
They were also required to place warning notices on the product itself in an effort to inform customers of the potential child safety hazards upon their purchase.
As of January 7, 2022, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has sent a motion for rulemaking with regard to safety standards for operating cords on custom window coverings to the United States Federal Registry. The agency suggested that the operational cords of window blinds and other coverings should not exceed 8 inches. Anything beyond length poses a great risk of strangulation to children 8 years old and under.
They also motioned for a federal rule that will require all manufacturers to follow the current voluntary standards. The voluntary standards currently applied stated that blinds should either be cordless and if not, the cord should not exceed 8 inches.
Some might wonder why it’s important to push through with this legislation. If voluntary standards are in place, why bother creating a law for them?
According to CPSC’s motion, the purpose is to make these standards mandatory. It is important to impose a rule to guard manufacturers to ensure the safety of children, especially those who are below the age of 8. Voluntary standards are not as reliable as formally written laws because some manufacturers could just choose to ignore those voluntary standards.
What Are The Child Safe Blinds?
All the above-mentioned risks that can result from blinds might discourage parents and future parents from installing blinds in their homes in the first place. Thankfully, there are a lot of safe options for window treatments.
These types of blinds and shades have all the benefits of other blinds but without the added risks. Installing these types of blinds will allow you to worry a little less because the children in your home will not be at such a high risk of strangling and being susceptible to some of the other window blind-related injuries.
The bonus to choosing some of these blinds is that your windows will look so much better! The truth is, if you have children in the house and still want a beautiful house with beautiful blinds, you should install child-safe blinds for them.
While these child-safe blinds might cost a little extra, the well-being of your little ones is worth the extra time, money, and effort. With all that being said, there are some types of blinds that work better than others.
If you are looking for child safe blinds, you should go with:
- Roller blinds
- Roman blinds
- Honeycomb blinds
These options will give you awesome blinds that do not risk the lives of young children in your home. You can also go with any cordless versions of your favorite blinds, or you can simply choose to child-proof your existing ones.
Roller blinds can be manufactured from a wide range of materials. These blinds roll out to cover windows and roll up to uncover them. The design is quite simple, but it works amazingly! Roller blinds are very durable and they are relatively inexpensive. They are also very easy to operate.
These factors make them an excellent choice for your home’s window treatment!
The most important thing to note about roller blinds is that they have child-safety features. The controls for roller blinds are usually out of children’s reach. Since they operate by rolling, they usually do not need a cord to function.
With roller blinds being cordless, you will not have to worry about strangulation. These blinds can make your home look stylish and cover your windows without exposing the children to risks.
They can also be made of light materials, so if children end up making contact with them, they will not be greatly harmed. Despite the simple design, roller blinds can provide excellent insulation. Therefore, aside from protecting your children from harm, you are also providing them with a room that is more climate-controlled.
Roller blinds are an excellent choice to consider for anyone that is concerned about the well-being of their children.
Honeycomb blinds are also commonly referred to as cellular shades. They are manufactured from a continuous piece of fabric that either rolls up or folds up along their crisp pleats. The fabric takes the shape of a honeycomb once bonded together, hence the name honeycomb blinds. There is a wide range of options with honeycomb blinds.
They come in a few different layer options:
There are also different options in:
- Pleat sizes
- Light control
How are these blinds better for children? Well, first of all, they use cordless technology. You will not have to worry about strangulation even when young children are near your blinds. As mentioned in a conducted study earlier, head injuries are also a common problem with blinds and young children.
While honeycomb blinds do not prevent children from running around and bumping their heads, their design would cause less harm to the children because they do not have sharp-edged pleats. Honeycomb blinds with multiple fabric layers could also possibly provide cushioning that will lessen the impact if kids ever accidentally bump their heads into your window treatment.
Although honeycomb blinds can be expensive and hard to keep clean, they are definitely worth the extra money and effort. Aside from providing increased safety, they also provide additional convenience because of how straightforward they are to operate.
Unlike other blinds on this list, Roman blinds are cord-operated. The fabric of these blinds tucks itself in whenever they are raised. Roman blinds are offered in various types of fabric options.
You can choose from:
Roman blinds allow for easy and effective light control. They can be conveniently adjusted depending on the time of day or season, and blackout options are available if total darkness is required in a certain room.
Although Roman blinds are not cordless, you still won’t have to worry about strangulation. The cord is hidden at the back of the panel. Only a small portion of the cord is exposed. Because of that children will not have enough access to be strangled by them. The only drawback is that these blinds can be costly. But when you consider all factors, Roman blinds are certainly a good choice.
Any Cordless Variation
The previously mentioned blinds are all excellent blinds, even if you do not factor in the child safety measures that they offer. However, some of you might not be satisfied with them, depending on your tastes. Perhaps you already have planned for a different style of blinds. The problem is, you are now having doubts after learning their risk to young children.
Well, thankfully it is still possible to go with the blinds that you want. With current technology, it is more likely than not that the blinds that you like have a cordless variation. You can choose from a wider range of blinds, although you might need to put in extra effort into the research in finding a cordless variation.
You can also expect that cordless blinds will be more expensive than their regular counterparts. If, for any reason, you want blinds other than the previously mentioned ones, it will be worth the extra money and effort. The most important thing is that the risk to young children will be reduced.
Child Proof Blinds
There are a lot of child safe blinds options available on the market. But what if you already have installed beautiful blinds in your home? You might think it’ll be a waste of money and resources if you were to dispose of all of them to buy new child-safe blinds, right?
Thankfully, there are steps you can take to make your current blinds so much safer for the children living with you in your home!
These solutions can range from being as simple as knotting your cord, to being unreachable for children, to more advanced options like motorizing your blinds. Others claim that they have snipped the entire cord from their blinds. By doing this, you will still be able to adjust the opening with the tilt wand.
If you are willing to spend a little more money, you should look into cord loops. A continuous cord loop can be attached so that your cords will not dangle all over the place. With this method, young children will not have the opportunity to grab them and be accidentally strangled.
Motorized blinds are another option for those that have a deep budget. These devices allow you to connect your blinds to mobile apps. These solutions can make your home beautiful and safe at the same time!