You probably want to deck out your toddler or preschooler's room with colorful accessories, but safety first. Young kids are notoriously curious, and a heavy table lamp might not be the right way to provide that wonderful soft light for story time. You don't have to skip the light -- after all, decorating is one of fun parts of parenting -- but choose a safe table lamp for your tot's domain.
You know not to put your priceless decorative-glass lamp next to your toddler or preschooler's bed -- that could spell bad news for both your lamp and your child. Regardless of price, a lamp that includes ceramic, glass or crystal is an accident waiting to happen. A shattered glass shade or ceramic base can easily cut your child, sometimes deeply enough to require stitches. For a safer bet, opt for a thick plastic, wood or metal lamp that won't end up in pieces if it falls. Be sure the material also doesn't become too hot to the touch -- if so, it could burn little fingers.
Size and Weight
A table lamp is a good option for your toddler or preschooler's bedroom because it can be pushed to the back of a dresser or night stand, out of your tot's reach. However, to minimize the risk of toppling, choose one that is short and narrow that your child is less likely to knock over. A lamp with a weighted base is less likely to tip, but be sure the lamp isn't so heavy that it could seriously hurt your child if it falls on her.
Once you've chosen the perfect table lamp for your tot's room, you have another job: picking the right light bulb. A low wattage bulb isn't too bright, but gives you and your child enough light to play and read. Never exceed the lamp manufacturer's recommended bulb wattage -- doing so can cause the lamp to overheat, posing a fire risk. Also make sure nothing touches the bulb (that includes your sweetie's favorite blanket) and always clean up and dispose of broken bulbs right away. Tell your child never to touch a light bulb, because it it's been on for a while, it can burn his hands.
No luck finding a great battery-operated lamp? Make your child's table lamp even safer by looking for a lamp with the shortest cord possible. Secure the cord using cord-keeper kits, and hide it behind the nightstand or dresser so it isn't out in the open, tempting your curious toddler or preschooler to taste it, yank it or wrap it around her body.