Dr. M.J. Bazos, MD, Patient Handout
18 Month Old Anticipatory Guidance
• Use a toddler car seat and make sure it is properly secured each time it is used.
• Test the water temperature with your wrist to make sure it is not too hot before bathing the toddler.
• Young siblings should not be left alone to supervise a toddler (e.g. in the bathtub or in the house).
• Empty buckets, tubs, or small pools immediately after use. Ensure that swimming pools have a foursided fence with a self-closing, self-latching gate. Supervise the toddler constantly whenever he is in or around water, buckets, the toilet, or the bathtub.
• Put sunscreen on the toddler before he goes outside to play. Sunscreens should be SPF-15 (Sun Protection Factor-15) or higher and should be reapplied every hour while in the sun.
• Keep the toddler's environment free of smoke. Keep the home and car nonsmoking zones.
• Do not leave heavy objects or containers of hot liquids on tables with tablecloths that the toddler may pull down.
• Turn pan handles toward the back of the stove. Keep the toddler away from hot stoves, fireplaces, irons, curling irons, and space heaters. Exclude poisons, medication, and toxic household products from the home or keep them in locked cabinets. Have safety caps on all medications. Keep Syrup of Ipecac in the home to be used as directed by the poison control center or the health professional. Keep the number of the poison control center near the telephone. In case of accidental ingestions, always call the poison control center prior to giving Ipecac or inducing vomiting.
• Keep cigarettes, lighters, matches, and alcohol out of the toddler's sight and reach.
• Do not give the toddler plastic bags, latex balloons, or small objects such as marbles.
• Ensure that the toddler wears a life vest if boating. Inflatable flotation devices or "knowing how to swim" do not make a toddler safe in the water.
• Ensure that electric wires, outlets, and appliances are inaccessible or protected. Safety covers should be placed over all electric outlets. Continue to use gates at the top and bottom of stairs and safety devices on windows. Supervise the toddler closely when he is on stairs.
• Never leave the toddler alone in the car or in the house. Do not expect young children to supervise the toddler (e.g. in the house, apartment, playground, or yard).
• Keep the toddler away from moving machinery, lawn mowers, overhead garage doors, driveways, and streets.
• Ensure that the toddler riding in a seat on an adult's bicycle is wearing a helmet. Wear a helmet yourself.
• Teach the child to use caution when approaching dogs, especially if the dogs are unknown or eating.
• Discuss with the health professional what to do for falls, cuts, puncture wounds, bites, bumps on the head, bleeding, and broken bones. Choose caregivers carefully. Discuss with them their attitudes about and behavior in relation to discipline. Prohibit corporal punishment.