by Pregnancy.org Staff
Now that your little one is setting out on his latest quest to explore the world (or at least his portion of it), you may find it necessary to set some physical limits for either safety or for reasonable containment (to help you keep up!) Safety gates strategically placed to block stairs or doorways can aid you in meeting this goal. It's important to understand the options available and which type you should use for your particular situation.
These gates screw into the doorway or if the door frame isn't sturdy, into the stud behind the wall. Since they are not easily dislodged, hardware mounted gates are the best choice for hazardous areas like the top of the stairs. Most hardware mounted gates will swing only one direction for added safety.
Pressure gates are useful in areas where falling isn't such a concern, such as between rooms with same-level flooring. Examples of use would be between kitchen and living area to protect your baby while you're making dinner or at the bottom of the stairs to discourage your able-climber.
Do you have a irregularly shaped, a tiny space or large doorway? A retractable gate is a good solution. These gates look a bit like a window shade placed on its side and can adapt to odd shapes. Because they are constructed of mesh material, they are not intended to be used at the top of stairs.
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