You want to do everything possible to assure a safe environment for your baby. Beginning with the first car trip home from the hospital, you should always use an infant seat whenever you take the baby for rides. A baby can be seriously injured in a sudden stop if held in a passenger’s arms rather than secured safely in an infant seat.

There are many simple ways to assure your baby’s safety at home. For example, never leave the baby alone on a table or other high place, where he or she could roll off.

Be sure that slats on the crib and playpen are no more than 2-1/2 inches apart, so the baby’s head cannot possibly get caught between them. The mattress should be firm, flat, and fit the crib snugly on all four sides. Keep the crib free of clutter. This means no pillow and no toys that the baby could become entangled in. Babies are attracted to colorful and shiny objects. Keep small objects like buttons and pins away from the baby’s reach so he or she is not tempted to pick them up and swallow them.

A baby’s delicate skin can be burned easily. When you take the baby outside, protect him or her from hot rays of the sun. Always test the water before your baby’s bath to be sure it is not too hot. Smoking cigarettes while feeding or playing with the baby could be dangerous, because hot ashes could fall on the baby.

Also, don't hold the baby while cooking. Hot fat could splatter on the baby, or he or she could touch hot pans or their contents. Be especially careful when using microwave ovens to warm baby’s bottle or food, as uneven heating may cause formula or food to be much hotter than you expect.