How Home Security Products Can Keep Your Kids Safe
Leaving your kids home alone for the first time can be nerve-wracking. The right planning, preparation, and home security products can put your mind at ease.
While legal age across the country varies greatly for when children are ready to be left alone, it can be difficult to feel like you're ready to let them. You can feel more confident if you take a few simple steps to ensure your kids are primed to deal with any situation.
Keep reading for the best ways to keep your kids safe.
Talk About It
Open communication can lower stress levels for you and your kids. Talk about any concerns they have, rules you expect followed and safety measures in place.
Assess your child's emotional readiness to stay home alone. Whether it's your 10-year-old getting home a half hour before you or your teenager having their first weekend in charge, be approachable and help them be prepared.
Discuss where you will be and how long you will be, making sure they can get in touch with you if they need to. Post emergency numbers in a visible place.
It is always helpful to start with trial runs where you're gone for a short period of time to get them comfortable with being alone.
Act It Out
Role-playing situations that might occur while you are gone can be a valuable tool in keeping your kids safe and helping them feel confident.
Demonstrate and train them on any home security products, emphasizing the importance of safety without scaring them. It doesn't do any good to have a great motion detection alarm for protection if your teen can't activate it before going to bed.
Local organizations often give classes in self-defense to build confidence and help your child feel more prepared. Have them arm home alarms and other home security products to ensure they are confident in doing so without assistance.
Give your child the self-esteem, training, tools, and resources to be safe by considering every possibility and preparing them for it.
Fire extinguishers, home security products, fuse boxes and emergency procedures should all be discussed and acted out.
Shine a Light on Safety
There's a reason horror movies and ghost stories are shared in the dark, it's scarier. Make sure you don't leave your kids in the dark, figuratively or literally.
Let them know if you're going to be late or if you ask your neighbor to drop in and check on them. This way they won't be worrying for no reason.
Ensuring there is proper lighting and visibility can help after dark. Make sure the lights around the house all work and for added protection or use home security products like motion sensor lights or alarms on the exterior doors and windows.
This will help take the guesswork out of whether the sound they heard was the neighbors cat or someone snooping around.
A well-lit property and visible alarms will also deter many individuals who may be up to no good. No one wants to have a spotlight shining on their criminal activities.
Make Some Noise About Safety
You can't stress safety enough and there are lots of tools available to help you do so. A first aid course, self-defense course or downloading the Red Cross Emergency app can assist your child in feeling confident and being prepared for the unexpected.
Teach kids what to say and not say on the phone, at the door, and on social media.
If your child's alone and in need of help, you want them to get someone's attention safely and quickly. A personal alarm, door alarms, and other home security products can make it easier for them to get assistance when necessary.
Practicing what to say when calling 911, how to respond if a delivery arrives and discussing what not to post on Facebook are all protective measures you need to explore with kids.
They must have a way of getting the right people's attention if they have to. Access to a phone they are comfortable using, important phone numbers and a close-by adult they can trust are all ways to support and empower.
A Picture's Worth 1000 Words
No matter how much you've prepared, or how confident your kids are, you're still going to worry whether they'll make good choices and be safe while your away.
A nanny cam placed in common areas of the house or recording the activity by the door can help you know what happened and perhaps help bring areas of concern.
Another option to deter criminals is to give an illusion of greater home security products than you actually have. Fake cameras make it seem as though security cameras are recording and can easily be installed without much investment of time or money. These run on a few batteries with options like motion activation and lights to make them even more believable.
Don't Be Fools, Safety Rules!
You want your kids to be safe, whether you're home or not, it just takes a little more planning when you're not. It is important to have rules, guidelines, and suggestions for any scenario you can imagine.
Have a fire exit plan, make sure they know where flashlights, how to use appliances properly and what not to touch.
It's smart to have snacks or meals prepared so there's no reason for them to use the stove when alone. Heaters in the wintertime should be explained and a safety check should be done to avoid the risk of fire.
Keep Them Busy
Give your kids a clear outline of what's expected and give them lots to do. This will not only distract them from being alone but also help you.
Fun activities for them to do, homework to accomplish and chores to be finished can help the time pass and calm their nerves while waiting for you to come home.
Instead of picturing them fighting off kidnappers or setting the kitchen on fire, you can visualize them playing their new computer game or doing their chores. It leaves less to the imagination and allows you to concentrate on what needs your attention while your home security products and preparedness keeps the kids safe.
Until recently children had responsibilities and chores that developed character and strength we don't see much of today. Work ethic, confidence and decision making skills are all developed through things like learning to stay home alone and accomplishing household chores.
Enroll kids in after-school activities or clubs that will help fill the time and give safe social interaction. A personal alarm for their backpack, wrist or pocket may give you peace of mind and them some protection as they walk to and from places.
You Can Do It
Building your child's confidence is key when preparing them to be home alone.
A First Aid course will allow them to feel confident and prepared for a medical emergency situation and can often be taken as a family.
A self-defense course builds confidence in situations where your child feels they're in danger. Teaching them to use self-defense along with the right home security products can keep your kids safe in your absence.
Set up a safe house for your child to run to if they must leave the house. In case of intruder or dangers like a fire, there should be a neighbor you trust who will be home to help.
They're In Trouble, Now What?
Even when you consider every possibility imaginable and prepare for the worst, unexpected situations arise. Whether it's a wild animal who climbed down your chimney or your daughter's pushy ex-boyfriend, they need to protect themselves.
The self-defense may work well against the ex-boyfriend but won't be effective on the bear moving into your garage. A window may have been unlocked or they forgot to set the window alarm, but now someone's threatening them and they need to get away. They need a plan.
In an emergency situation, your child will be scared and needs a solid plan to follow. Household alarms to warn them of danger, personal alarms to draw attention in an emergency and things like pepper spray are all options that should be considered.
It's vital each child has an action plan that is tailored to their skills, age level, and physical or mental abilities. You know your child better than anyone and want to make sure they don't hurt themselves or anyone else by mistake.
Any weapons or ammunition, medications, and poisons should be safely stored and children need to be properly educated on their dangers.
Who You Going To Call?
Have a contingency plan for every plan. If one of your phones go dead or internet service is down and you can't contact each other, who are you going to call?
Make sure the children know what to do if you are late or they can't get in touch with you. Have a safe person in the neighborhood to check on them if you can't reach them while you're away.
If you're gone for the weekend, make sure your 16-year old knows which company to call in a power outage, furnace malfunction or plumbing repair emergency.
It's good to show them where the main water valve, main fuse box, and extra flashlights are just in case.
Have a fully stocked first aid kit with numbers for poison control, veterinarians for pets and emergency clinics for medical advice that doesn't require an emergency room visit.
If you are not going to be reachable for part of the time, give them a family member or friend's number who can answer questions and give advice if needed.
Just because your child is staying home alone doesn't mean they have to feel alone. The right home security products, supportive adults, and taught skills will give them the sense of control and safety.
Home Away From Home
Your innocent child's headed off to college and living in dorms for the first time. You're not there to make sure the doors are locked and they're staying safe.
More than 36 000 crimes are committed on campuses across the nation every year and you want them to be safe.
Classes in self-defense and safety can be a bonding experience together before they go, or sign them up for some at the campus gym.
Car alarms, personal protection kits, hidden safes and various other home security products can empower your student to be safe while away from home.
Knowledge is Power
The more information you and your child have about how to be safe in any situation, the more prepared you will all be for their new independence.
Patiently answer all their questions, while talking about solutions to any concerns they may have. When your children feel their worries have been addressed, and they have been given options, they'll be prepared and confident when the time comes.
Teaching your children coping skills and safety guidelines will develop a sense of pride and accomplishment in them. You will be able to trust their abilities to take care of themselves when they need to and they'll learn life skills needed as they head out into the world.
It doesn't have to cost a fortune to keep your children safe. A lot of discussing, preparing and planning will be the most vital part of your safety plan. Invest in a few home security products for added peace of mind and you will be able to be present in the moment, where ever you are, knowing all is well at home.
Don't Worry, Be Happy
Learn more about how you can keep your family safe and your mind worry-free by checking out our home security products and company blog.
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