Safe

First aid

Every home should have a first aid kit in some form, whether it’s a full ready-made kit purchased from a first aid supplier or a plastic container filled with individual items bought at the chemist or supermarket.

Ideally, you would have a fully stocked kit in an easy to reach spot at home, and a secondary smaller kit that you might take with you in the car, pram or bag on outings or holidays. Make sure that your first aid kit is easily accessible and replacing items as they get used.

Consider enrolling in a first aid course. Keep a first aid book near your kit and re-read it occasionally as a reminder of what you’ve learned in first aid courses and so that you know where information can be found if you need to refer to it quickly. Keep a resuscitation chart visible in a handy location or high risk areas such as near pools.

Check that portable home phones and mobiles are charged and working with sufficient credit to make calls.

Keep emergency numbers on hand and programmed into phones.

Have a home safety checklist as a reminder for yourself as well as carers/babysitters in your absence.

The following are some very basic items to keep in your kit. Most of these will come in some form in ready-made kits or you can discuss with your pharmacist the idea items for you and anything else you should add.

  • Antiseptic
  • Band Aids / plasters in various sizes
  • Bandages – crepe – thin & wide
  • Bandages – triangular for sling
  • Cotton wool and buds
  • Digital thermometer
  • Disposable gloves
  • Heat packs
  • Ice pack in freezer
  • Lotions for bites and stings
  • Medicine measuring cup / spoon / syringe
  • Medicines for fevers and illness
  • Small scissors
  • Sterile gauze
  • Tweezers

Featured home safety resources

 Wherever you are in Australia, these featured resources are available nationally.

Please navigate through the subsections above to find more local or specific contacts.

Falls

Children fall off furniture, play equipment, down stairs or from any height they are determined to climb to, to almost standing still. Reduce the risk of falls by installing safety rails or gates at steps, stairs and balconies and soft fall under play equipment. When taking part in sport and outdoor activities ensure that protective gear such as helmets and shin guards are worn. Avoid placing interesting objects in high places or heavy items on unstable bases. Secure furniture to walls.

Pharmaceuticals, medications and remedies

Always read labels and administer medicines, prescriptions and vitamins as directed on the package or by your medical or health practitioner. Check the age recommendation, dosage and duration for use of medicines and don’t share prescriptions. Keep out of reach of children, but on hand so that medications can be quickly accessed in an emergency. Do not remove or alter labels. Keep medicine measuring cups, droppers and spoons clean. Check that thermometers and other monitors are clean and working. Check expiry dates and talk to your chemist about the correct disposal of unused or expired medicines and syringes.

Poisoning

There is probably something poisonous in every room of your house.

  • Bathroom – hair dyes, hair sprays, shaving creams, perfumes, eucalyptus oil, cosmetics, shoe polish, medicines, deodorant, suntan creams.
  • Bedroom – perfumes, cosmetics, nail polish and remover, mothballs, contraceptives.
  • Kitchen – dish and dishwasher detergents, drain cleaners, floor polish, furniture polish, oven cleaner, insect sprays, cockroach and rodent baits.
  • Laundry – bleach, washing powders, fabric softeners, turpentine / methylated spirits, ammonia.
  • Lounge / dining room – alcohol, lighters, matches, incense and oil burners.
  • Shed / garage – turpentine, petrol, pesticides, paints and lead paint, break fluid, anti-freeze, pool chemicals, car batteries, plant and dust sprays.

Children love to explore new things and put things in their mouths. They also like to explore new food and drinks and many poisons can look quite appealing to a toddler. Children also like to imitate. You may normally keep medicines out of reach, but when you’re sick you tend to leave them on bedside tables. Cleaning products tend to be left out during cleaning. Make up and perfumes are on hand when you’re getting ready to go out. Make sure that poisons are stored out of reach or behind locked doors, and immediately put back away after use.

National contacts

This is a brief list of organisations listed throughout the Safe section, which provide a national emergency or safety service. For specific services or to see what’s available in a local area please browse the subsections in the menu above.

000 Triple Zero emergency

Ambulance, Fire, Police

Poisons Information

24 hour

State Emergency Services

24 hour

Translating and Interpreting Service

24 hour

State and local areas

Alcoholics Anonymous

24 hour

Crime Stoppers

24 hour

Kids Help Line

24 hour

Lifeline

24 hour

Emergency contact list

View details and download

Also see >

Emergency and advice

– Contacts and resources

Healthy

– Counselling

Nurtured

– Relationships

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Acknowledgement of Country

In the spirit of reconciliation Children's Guide acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, waters and community. We pay our respect to Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.