How to Baby Proof a Living Room (The Complete Guide)

So, it’s time to start baby proofing your home? Baby Proofing can be a tedious task, which is why I am breaking it down room by room for you. This article’s focus is covering all aspects of baby proofing your living room. I cover how to baby proof the couch, coffee table, bottom of stairs, blinds, entertainment center, TV, fireplace, sunken living room, Christmas tree, lamps, and shelving. I’m excited to take this journey with you and can’t wait to help make this process as spelled out for you as possible.


Baby proofing a couch is a true challenge, the thought of running to the restroom and coming back to the living room to find that your tot has climbed onto the couch and fell, tragically hitting their head on tile, laminate, wood or whatever type of floors you have is terrifying. If your child is in the phase of life of climbing all over the couch then prep the floor with some pillows and blankets for the day. This will ensure if a tumble does occur the impact is not as harsh.

Also, my little one likes to attempt to climb onto the top of the couch in hopes of getting over the top and to the back of the sofa. It may be beneficial to consider rearranging the furniture so that the sofa is against a wall if possible. Doing this will get rid of the fear of having a youngster flip over the top of the couch.

A couch made of fabric may be difficult to clean, it may be worth your time to get a slipcover in a dark color so it’s easy to hide stains. If your young one spills on the slipcover you can remove it and throw it into the wash, tada, your original sofa is left in mint condition.

If you are in the search for a new sofa, I recommend leather for its durability and ease of wiping up any type of mess left behind by a baby or toddler.

Coffee Table

Coffee tables can be one of the most dangerous items in the home. Why you ask, because coffee tables sit at the perfect height for baby and toddlers to smack or fall right into them, typically right on the head. If the plan is to keep the coffee table than I recommend picking up a foam protector kit to put all around the table.

If the table is made of glass or wood, then the entire table is a hazard, be sure to protect not just the edges but the table entirely. The foam protectors are not the most beautiful and may take away from the aesthetics of the table but it’s important to remember that its temporary. Your little one is much more important than the appearance of your living room.

If the legs of your coffee table need protected and your looking for a cheap way to do so, you can cut a pool noodle to fit around the legs. It may not be pretty but it will do the job.

The number one thing you can do is ditch your hazardous table and pick up an ottoman, a fabric coffee table, or poufs to use as a coffee table. Having a safe coffee table will completely eliminate any fear of your little one injuring themselves. My personal favorite is an ottoman because they typically can be opened and used for storage. You will need the added storage for all the toys that will be accompanying your living room.

Bottom of Stairs

Baby gates are a necessary evil when there is a little crawler on your hands. Stairs are very intriguing to little ones, and they will find there way to the stairs continually until a gate is installed.

Before selecting a baby gate, be sure to measure the width of your staircase to ensure the gate that’s purchased will fit. Be sure to follow the directions given with the gate that you select. Measure twice before drilling any holes. Doing so will limit having multiple holes in the wall. Check for a stud, if a stud is available that is your best option. If not the next best option is to drill into the drywall.

Hopefully the gate that’s purchased came with a drywall anchor, if not they should be available at your local hardware store. If drilling into wood is needed then luckily that will work similarly to drilling into a stud. If there is concern about ruining the wood than find stair mounting kits on Amazon that may resolve that issue.

Lastly, make sure to have a level surface to install, you do not want your gate to be installed wonky and unsecured. Once its installed, I recommend mocking what the toddler will eventually be doing, which is climbing on the gate and pulling and shaking it with force to be sure that it will hold up.

If the staircase has a wide opening there are expandable baby gates to fit. Here is the best baby gate we found after trying out a few brands. Only use an expandable gate at the bottom of yours stairs, not the top. A child’s weight at the top of the stairs may not hold on an expandable gate which could result in injury.

How to Baby Proof Blinds

Blind cords are a serious danger to children, and some parents are unaware of how easily these cords can get wrapped around a young one’s neck causing strangulation. It takes only moments for something like this to happen and the most hazardous of cords are those that are looped at the ends, for obvious reasons. As soon as your little one is mobile your blind cords need to be out of reach!

If your moving into a new home or are planning to upgrade your current blinds the best open is to purchase cordless blinds, this way you will not need to hassle with baby proofing the cords, not to mention they look much neater and cleaner than blinds with cords.

If purchasing new blinds is not an option and spending money is not an option than cut the cord if looped, then wrap the cord and place it up high out of your child’s reach.

These cord wind upsare a good option if you do not want to install a cleat to your wall, you just open the device and wrap the cord inside until the cord is out of reach and shut it, That’s it!

Cleats are also an option, you can find all different types online or at your local hardware store, typically they have to be screwed into the wall, but we did find some awesome ones that are very clean looking, and are installed by a magnet, therefore no holes in your wall. Check them out here.

Entertainment Center

An entertainment center typically has a lot going on, especially in this generation, you may have things like a TV box, Roku, game console, dvd player, Apple TV, sound system, and that’s just the beginning!

So, where do we start, how about the obvious… Does your entertainment center have sharp edges, or does the entire setup seem like a hazard? Start with picking up these edge and corner guards, this product will protect whatever is needing protected and comes in three different colors. If your not looking for a specific color you can also opt for clear and get these corner protectors.

Next, where do you have all of your TV accessories? If you have doors on your entertainment center but use this area for storing movies/games and such, it’s time to find a new home for those items. Move the accessories from the top of the entertainment center into the cabinets.

Glass doors are perfect, your remotes should still be able to control all your accessories. If the doors are made of wood or something of that sort, then you can pick up a wireless remote control extender kit. 

If your entertainment center is doorless, then make sure your accessories are located as far out of reach of a little one as possible. What this means is place the items on top of the entertainment center. Ensure they are mounted to your entertainment center. Next, protect all of the buttons on your devices as well as dvd slots, as soon as your toddler can reach every button will be pressed and all the snacks will be shoved into the dvd slot!

In my opinion doing all this work would be a huge hassle. It would be more valuable to ditch the unsafe entertainment center and pick up one with doors. With the amount of research I have done, a new entertainment center with glass doors and decent reviews can be found for $150 which is a great price to ensure your little ones safety.

Don’t forget once all of your items are placed inside the entertainment center to then safety lock the doors ensuring no pesky little fingers find there way inside. We love the magnetic child safety cabinet locks because they are not visible from the exterior of your cabinets. Also, when your kiddo is not around they can easily be unlocked. We use them for all of our kitchen and bathroom cabinets as well and we love them!

If your little one can access any outlets with electronics plugged into it then I highly suggest purchasing an outlet cover. This outlet cover will keep kiddos from playing around with the plugs. Use this on all outlets that are in use in your home that are accessible to your little one.

If you have a power strip that needs protecting then check out our favorite cover that we use in our home.

Next, conceal or protect cords. To begin with, can the cord be shortened? If so you may want to consider getting cord shorteners. My family uses and loves this cord cover and shortener, you can get two jobs done at once, covering and shortening which is a convenient and affordable option.

Secondly, nobody wants children at any age chewing on cords. Conceal them with the cable concealer, this product can conceal multiple cords at once and can be put on the wall, it can look very seamless placed right above the molding near the bottom of the wall.

Lastly, if it seems that your entertainment center is unsafe, and wobbles around with a bit of force, then consider babyproofing the piece of furniture by anchoring it to the wall. We found these excellent furniture anti-tip straps that are easy to install.


Along with your entertainment center, your TV must be baby proofed. Its astounding  how many child injuries occur each year from televisions and how easily it can be prevented.

My number one recommendation is to mount the TV on the wall, well out of reach of a young one, and then of course conceal the wires if in reach of little fingers. Mounting the TV completely eliminates any risk factors of injury as long as the TV is mounted properly.

I do not recommend cheaping out on a mount. My husband and i have tried purchasing the most affordable mount, and the one thing it was lacking was security to the wall. We were concerned that the mount was unable to handle the weight of the TV and it would just be a matter of time before the mount failed and the TV came crashing down. God forbid that would happen with your little jewel underneath it.

When looking for a mount that can be moved around, I highly recommend this articulating TV wall mount which we use for our living room television. If you’re in search of a stationary mount try this one, you will not be disappointed with the 25,000 nearly 5 star reviews.

If unable to mount the TV to the wall that’s okay, there are still options. Pickup some TV straps if they don’t already come with your TV. Vivo makes highly rated TV Anti Tip Safety straps that come in at about $10 which is a steal. The only downside to these is you will need to drill holes into the back of your entertainment center. The good news… it’s in the back, hopefully out of sight and out of mind!

Lastly, consider protecting the screen of the TV if its sitting on your entertainment center. The possibility little fingers being all over the TV screen is very high. The screen protectors come in all different sizes and are not cheap but if you decide it’s necessary, I recommend the screen protectors by Vizomax. If spending over $100 to protect your screen is not for you then consider a screen cleaner. my families favorite is this screen cleaner kit.


Creating a safe space for young one’s when you have a fireplace in your home can be a challenge. Fireplaces possess all sorts of risks including but not limited to burns, carbon monoxide poisoning, cuts, bruises, head injuries and much more. It’s a no brainer that fireplaces are one of the top hazards in our homes.

The simplest way to protect your children from fireplaces and put your mind completely at ease is to gate off the fireplace. Placing a gate around your fireplace may not be the most beautiful thing to look at but it will save you the constant fear of your child getting injured.

Gating the fireplace will also save the hassle of protecting all the different aspects of your fireplace. Child proofing fireplaces can take a lot of time, money, and effort and still may not be totally childproof. This can result in parents still being worried when youngsters are anywhere near the fireplace. The most important thing i can do as a mother is put my mind at ease. I already have so many constant worries with my daughter.  If I am able to eliminate one of those worries than i am going to do it! That’s why my favorite option is a baby gate.

The gate should be mounted to the wall to avoid any risk of the gate tipping over, or a toddler finding a way to sneak around the gate when a guardian is not looking. My personal favorite is this super wide baby gate. Another gate that has rave reviews on Amazon is this superyard.

If a baby gate around your fireplace is not quite your speed then you have a few things to consider.

To begin with, you should analyze what needs to be protected, here is a list of things to be protected:

  • Fireplace Doors
  • Flat Hearth
  • Stepped Hearth
  • Tools

Let’s start with the easiest to protect, fireplace doors.  Not every person will have fireplace doors depending on what type of fireplace you have. Most gas fireplaces will not have the doors but wood burning fireplaces may. What the majority of people do is lock the doors to keep youngsters from getting in.

Safety Innovations makes a fireplace door lock that works if you have horizontal handles on the fireplace doors. In order to use the fireplace the lock would need to be removed. a slight gap is also needed between handles for the lock to work. I recommend checking the specs to be sure the lock will work on your fireplace. A screwdriver is required to install, all other hardware is included.

A Hearth is the area that extends from a fireplace, usually made of brick, tile, or stone. Hearth’s can either be raised which is more traditional or flat, either way they may need to be protected to keep little one’s from becoming injured.

A flat Hearth is pretty simple to protect, all you should really need is a pad to go over the hard material. Typically there are no sharp edges to a flat hearth so finding a pad that fits the size of your hearth is all you would need. Simply remove it when the fireplace is in use to prevent any fire hazard.

Mats can easily be found by searching floor pads for kids on Amazon or just floor pads. The pads come in all different colors and typically can be modified depending on what size you need. It would not be difficult to find mats that would not take away from the aesthetics of your home and fit nicely in the space.

A stepped Hearth can be very dangerous. Kids are attracted to the idea of climbing all over stepped hearth’s because they are at the perfect height for small people. The only problem is they are almost always made of very hard materials that have sharp edges, every parents worst nightmare!

Some choose to just protect the edge and corners of the hearth by using these edge and corner guards, these are nice because they can also be used on other things like furniture. If you have leftover guards it more than likely will not go to waste. These edge and corner guards come in several different colors to accent your fireplace and furniture nicely. The product uses a double sided tape to secure to the fireplace and furniture which overall adheres well, but some found that their toddlers could pull off the guards. If the guards do not seem secure you may want to pick up some adhesive and do some double duty on them.

My favorite way to protect a stepped hearth is with a soft seat hearth pad. This pad covers the entire top of the hearth and the edges. The pad is made of a flame retardant foam. The pad uses heavy double sided tape to secure to your hearth. It is available in taupe or brown. The pad is made to fit most stepped hearth’s and if it will not fit your hearth the company can be contacted to create a custom order. This pad is on the pricier side, but if you’re looking for peace of mind and a well made product then this is well worth the price!

Lastly, if none of the above suits your fancy, then DIY protect your stepped hearth by using kids play mats or interlocking floor mats similar to what i recommend using for a flat hearth. This will be much more affordable than purchasing the soft seat hearth pad. Keep in mind kids love to pull apart these floor mats, it will be the first thing they try to do once you have covered your hearth. I recommend securing them with a heavy double sided tape or some type of adhesive so the mats stay intact.

Fireplace tools must be placed out of reach of children. Place them either behind the fireplace gate, or in the nearest closet or garage. Not only are these tools typically heavy, but they are sharp and need to be as far away from our children’s fingers as possible, enough said!

Lastly, CO2 or Carbon Dioxide poisoning is known as the “silent killer” in our homes. Carbon Monoxide is odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas that kills over 430 people each year. The most common reason for carbon monoxide poisoning is from clogged fireplace vents.

Vents on fireplaces, wood burning or gas must be checked and cleaned to prevent CO2 poisoning.

The National Fire Protection Association states that “ chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once per year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearness”.

Checking you fireplace once per year is a minimum. If you use your fireplace often then you should at least be checking your chimneys, fireplaces, and vents every six months.

It is often assumed that if the fireplace has not been used then you are safe to have a fire, this is incorrect and unsafe if you have a chimney. Critters will often nest and find their way into unused chimneys, this debri can cause a major hazard. Please remember to clear your chimney before starting the first fire of the season.

A great way to monitor the CO2 levels in your home is to have a carbon monoxide detector.

This battery operated digital display carbon monoxide detector is my favorite detector, i love that it’s battery operated so i don’t have to worry about finding a plug in to use that is out of my daughter’s reach. I enjoy the fact that this detector will still function if a power outage occurs, unlike many of the plug in detectors.

If you find yourself more interested in a plug in detector the First Alert Carbon Monoxide Detector has rave reviews on amazon and has a battery backup in case of a power outage.

Sunken Living Room

A sunken living room can be problematic to baby proof. I have not found any revolutionary products to baby proof the step down into a sunken living room.

I will admit that i feared my daughter would get injured trying to get down into our sunken living room, but thankfully she learned very quickly. She started crawling backwards at about 6 months and after helping her get off the ledge for the first couple days she had it down no problem.

My recommendation is to attempt not to stress regarding having a sunken living room especially if it is carpet. I want to assure you that your little one will quickly figure it out. If the living room is hard floors, and you feel that you should baby proof the area until your little one is confident than a suggestion would be to get a memory foam mat to cushion the area. This non slip rug/mat would work great to pad the area while your little one is practicing entering the living room.

Christmas Tree

Gosh, Christmas Trees can surely cause a headache for us parents when it comes to keeping our little ones away from it. A Christmas tree is a new addition to the home, its tall, bright, and colorful and practically calling our little one’s names. Imagine their frustration when we tell them NO, don’t touch the shiny pretty green thing! That would be pretty upsetting to any little child.

So, what do we need to address when it comes to baby proofing our Christmas trees you ask? Here is a list of what needs attention.

  • Placement of tree
  • Should we gate off our tree?
  • Type of tree
  • Ornament type
  • Ornament hooks
  • Light placement
  • Choking hazards

Placement of tree

Once an infant has become mobile it’s time to consider if relocating your Christmas tree is necessary. Placing the Christmas tree front and center in the living room may not be the wisest idea, unless you plan to gate off the tree from your youngster. A front and center tree is one big toy that your little one will beeline to every time he or she is in the living room.

Consider placing the tree in a corner, next to a piece of furniture so it’s not the first thing your kiddo sees when they enter the living room. Also, be sure the tree is within eyesight. If you are in the kitchen doing dishes, can you see if your little one is playing in the christmas tree? If the answer is no then you may want to consider relocating it.

Should we gate off our tree?

The easiest way to assure the safety of a little one around the Christmas tree is to gate off the tree. Remember to secure the gate to the wall in case your tot decides to climb all over the gate. No parent wants a gate falling onto their child.

I enjoy the idea of the gate because i would not have to worry about all the aspects of baby proofing the tree. I also can continue decorating it exactly as i like versus the hassle of changing things up to make it safe for my daughter.

My husband and i chose not to gate our tree because I genuinely disliked how it looked. It may sound silly but i didn’t want myself or all my guest to be staring at a baby gate. I feel it takes away from the beauty of the tree, and i wanted my daughter to enjoy the Christmas tree as much as we do.

Not everyone feels the same way as i do, and of course there is nothing wrong with that. If you are comfortable with placing a gate around your tree than do it. At the end of the day you’re saving yourself a lot of time and also will not have to worry about what your child is doing in the living room all day.

This gate with walk through door is a great option and does not cost as much as many gates. The gate can also be used as a play pen and comes with the hardware to mount the gate to the wall. I love that it has a door so your can easily access the tree when needed.

Type of tree

If you are anything like me then having a fake tree was something i swore i would never give into, until.. we had a child. Since it was decided we were not going to gate off our christmas tree i feared that my daughter would constantly be eating pine needles (since she literally consumes everything within her sight….naturally). Let’s also not forget the water in the base of the tree.

I knew that i was constantly going to be worrying, and let’s face it i already worry enough as a parent,don’t you? The worrying was enough to change my mind and switch to the dreaded fake tree. Ugh, how i miss walking into my home to the fresh smell of tree. I will never forget the weekend trips to the tree farm where i select the perfect tree and sip my hot cocoa, a totally instagram worthy worthy moment, while my husband slaves away cutting down and hauling the tree to our car. what beautiful times we had. 🙂

The honest truth is, getting the fake tree was worth it times a million! I no longer have to water a tree or vacuum up needles every thirty seconds, it’s life changing! I recommend putting some thought into getting an artificial tree if you haven’t already. The good news is, you should only need the fake tree for a couple years and then you can easily go back to your old traditions, which is what we plan to do!

If an artificial tree is out of the question then be sure to get the freshest tree possible to limit the amount of pine needles that will fall off your tree. Also be sure to consistently water the tree to keep it from drying out resulting in the loss of more needles.

Ornament Type

Shatterless ornaments, need i say more! If the tree is primarily ornaments that have been collected over the years than in may be time to put most of them away for the next few years and time to pick up some shatterless ornaments. Today, majority of ornaments are shatterless and quite easy to find. This way toddlers can easily help decorate the tree without the worry of broken ornaments and ouchies all over!

I recommend selecting some of your favorite keepsake ornaments and simply placing them high enough on the tree that they are out of reach from the little’s. This cute little 50 piece set would be a great addition to any tree, also each year Costco comes out with a large set for a great price as well.

Ornament Hooks

It is easy to overlook the hazards of ornament hooks. If I’m being honest it was something i didn’t even consider the first year we had our daughter until i found them in her mouth! Ornament hooks are sharp, could you imagine a baby getting one of those hooks lodged in their throat…i don’t want that picture in my head.

Thankfully there is an easy solution, visit your local craft store and pick up your favorite ribbon, the thinner the better to fit through the hole of the ornament. You can also make this fun and decorative for the christmas tree and create cute bows with the ribbon. Ornament hook problem solved, hallelujah!

Light Placement

Christmas tree lights of course can also be hazardous. Children love all things shiny and the lights will more than likely end up in their mouths. The solution is quite easy, burn down the tree and forget ever having one… just kidding! When you are stringing the lights around your tree simply be sure to push them into the tree so they are out of reach from you infant or toddler. Yes, finally one tip that doesn’t require fishing out your wallet!

Choking Hazards

Lastly, if you put a lot of extra gizmos (honestly who other than myself still uses that word?) in your tree to decorate be sure it’s not a choking hazard, or in reach of your kids. Tinsel is a big no no, if you previously used it, get rid of it, it’s as easy as that!


Why is it that the majority of living rooms do not have pre installed lights, like can lights? If your living room has pre installed lighting, then lucky you! For the rest of us,we have to put up with trying to light the space with table and floor lamps that do a sub par job at providing adequate lighting, and create hazards for our children. So, the question is, how do we resolve the hazards involved with lamps?

My husband and I have a sectional in our living room which is up against a wall. Where the sectional curves there is a bit of space between the couch and wall. We placed our floor lamp in this space and since it’s behind our couch our daughter is unable to access it. Take a look at how the living room is configured to see if there are any inaccessible areas to place your floor lamps.

Another option is to consider installing wall sconce lighting on the living room walls to eliminate the hazards that lamps create from the accessible cords and risk of them being tipped over. Installing wall sconces may require a bit of work depending on where they are going to be installed. The good news is there are many different styles of lights to compliment any living room at a very reasonable price.

If the plan is to keep your table lamps be sure to push them back on the table as far as possible so they are less likely to be messed with. Another option is to consider purchasing lamps that clamp onto your table. Also, be sure to  secure or hide the cords from kids. Refer to the entertainment center section of this article to learn how to secure the cords if needed.


Do any of you have experience with a toddler attempting to climb to the top of your living room ladder shelf? I have learned firsthand that ladder shelves are the ultimate jungle gym for toddlers. So how to we child proof our shelving?

Free standing shelving must firstly be secured to the wall. This will ensure when your toddler attempts to climb on it, it will not result in the shelf toppling down on top of him or her. I think majority of us have seen those horrifying videos.

We all need to understand the importance of securing our freestanding furniture to the wall. Some free standing shelving may come with the hardware to mount it to the wall. if the hardware is not included it can be found on amazon or at your local hardware store. These furniture anchors are a great option with reassuring reviews.  

Remove breakable and dangerous items from the shelving, and keep objects that look like toys off the shelf. Having toy like items on the shelf will simply tempt your child, resulting in them doing whatever it takes to access it.The less on the shelf, the better. It may also be necessary to pad the corners of the shelf depending if they are in reach of your little one.