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How can I keep my 8-month-old from grabbing electrical cords?
Q: My 8-month-old son is grabbing electrical cords and I can't keep up. How can I keep him from hurting himself? My son just started crawling and I don't want to keep him in a playpen all day.
A: When children start crawling around, parents need to “child-proof” parts of their home. This means you are going to put up an expandable gate in the doorway of the room where you will place your son. Remove any plants from that room, along with any glass figures or glass dishes that can break. You will also want to tape foam onto sharp table corners, and put safety caps on the electrical outlets. You may even have to pull out a cord or two from some of your lamps and place them high on the table. Your goal is to make the room reserved for your son as safe as possible. By doing this, you eliminate having to constantly say “NO” and rushing in to stop your child from engaging in some activity where he can get hurt or will break something.

You are wise to want your child to have some freedom to explore and exercise his body by removing him from the playpen. The secret is to turn one of your rooms into a big playpen that will be safe and fun for your son.