When we have small children, newborn to a year old, there are many different scenarios that may cause a fall. When small, especially newborn, these falls can be very harmful. According to the CDC approximately 2.8 million children a year visit the emergency room due to injuries from a fall. *affiliate links*
How Can We Prevent Falls?
The majority of infant falls occur at home. This is why we have to make sure we are vigilant at home to reduce the risk of a fall. This includes not leaving babies alone on elevated surfaces (couches, beds, tables, counters, changing tables, etc.).
Within the first year babies learn to kick, roll over, crawl and sit up. Each of these milestones are unpredictable. You cannot know that in that instance your child will not roll over for the first time and fall.
It is best not to put your child in a high chair until they are able to sit up supported and raise their head. When they are able and you do place them in a highchair always strap them in. This prevents them from trying to stand up and fall.
If you live in a multi story home I recommend baby gates at the top and bottom of the stairs until you are sure every child in the home can safely get up and down the stairs on their own. Personally, I have a 3 year old and 1.5 year old. Both are able to get up and down the stairs, but I still keep a baby gate at the bottom of the stairs so they are not running around and playing on them without my knowledge.
When you have infants direct supervision is necessary most all the time. It is definitely necessary any time a child is on an elevated surface.