Child Safety - Preventing Unintentional Injuries

Children are naturally curious. They explore the world around them. But everywhere, particularly in the comfort of their own home, there are many seen and unseen dangers.  This site aims to support all who care for children by highlighting many of these dangers and giving valuable tips on how to help keep children safe in and around their home.

Put babies on their backs to sleep.Reduce the risk of Cot Death

Did you know that your baby should not wear a hat when being put down to sleep?  This is because babies lose heat through their head so covering their head may cause your baby to become overheated.  We all want our babies to be cosy and comfortable as they sleep.  But overheating can increase the risk of cot death.  A baby can overheat when asleep because of too much bedding or clothes or because the room is too hot.  For more information see the "don't let baby get too hot" advice in our Safe Sleep for your Baby section.  
And remember - always place your baby on their back to sleep, with their feet to the foot of their cot and their face and head free of clothes and covers.

Remember to visit our Hot Topics section for further items of interest.

A to Z of Child Safety TopicsActivity CornerAsphyxia - Choking, Strangulation, SuffocationBurns and Scalds

    Child Safer HomeCuts and BleedingElectricity and GasEmergency Services

    Falling, climbing, grabbingFarm SafetyFire SafetyFirst Aid

    Hot TopicsOutdoor PlaySafety around PetsPoison Prevention

    PublicationsRoad SafetySafe Sleep - reducing the risk of Cot Death / Sudden Infant DeathSmoke-free home and car

    Sun SafetyToy SafetyWater SafetyWindow and Balcony Safety

     *The words we use in the Child Safety Awareness Programme:

    • "Accident" implies an unpredictable and, therefore, unavoidable event.
    • However, we know that most childhood injuries, and the events leading to them, are predictable and preventable.
    • This is why the Child Safety Awareness Programme favours the use of the term "unintentional injury".

    About this site:

    This child safety website has been developed by the Department of Public Health - Midlands to support the Child Safety Awareness Programme (CSAP).

    More detailed information and further topics will be added over time.The information points on these webpages are neither complete or exhaustive - they are intended as prompts to raise consciousness of child safety. If you have a concern that is not covered here, please contact the public health nurse at your local health centre.

    Information changes over time - in line with emerging issues and guidance and also in response to queries from health professionals and parents/guardians and others who care for children.

    When using information or resources contained here, please acknowledge the source.

    Through this website you are able to link to sites outside of the HSE. We have no control over the nature, content and availability of those sites.


    Most unintentional injuries (often called accidents) can be prevented:

    Remember the key message where child safety is concerned -
    Watch your child at all times, as children do not understand danger

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    The following images, unless otherwise stated, are from - Let's play © Kirill Linnick; Building blocks (adapted)by Wee Sen Goh under Flickr Creative Commons Licence; 3D man crawling © Martin Konz; Exclamation Mark © Pkruger; Pedestrian crossing road sign © Sergey Salivon; Curious Cartoon Dog © Jsatt83; Pool Reflection © Arindam Banerjee; Sun © Antonio Mirabile; Crayons © sarmum