How To Babyproof Your Video Game Console
For all the soon-to-be or new parents who love to play video games, chances are good that you’re more concerned with babyproofing the gaming console than any other item in your home.
We get it — gaming systems are expensive!
As your baby becomes more curious and aware of his surroundings, the flashy electronics right at eye level will be their first victims.
If you’re worried about your baby getting into your video game console, pushing the power button constantly, knocking it off the shelf, or otherwise damaging it, you are not alone.
Babyproofing a game console can be tricky! Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent it from getting damaged by your tiniest, most destructive family member.
This post covers a few tips and tricks on how to babyproof your video game console. Since your new baby likely won’t be gaming with you for a few years, you’re better off protecting your system in the meantime.
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How to babyproof your video game console
Here are the most effective ways to babyproof your video game console without changing too much in your home.
Set up a baby gate or barrier
If the gaming console sits in the entertainment center, one quick solution is to gate off the entire piece of furniture. Barriers like this one can be propped up and moved around the house as needed, but they can also be mounted to the wall to prevent wobbling or tipping.
If your baby is consistently getting into the Xbox, a barrier or gate may be the best option until this phase passes.
Build a console shield
Many parents build protective boxes for their cable boxes so their children don’t notice them, and gaming consoles can be protected in the same way.
Metal lattice sheets help keep the console cool and prevent any overheating, while also concealing the machine from your baby.
This Reddit user designed a simple mesh box around his gaming console to keep his young daughter out. This material allows the console to vent, preventing the machine from overheating and causing any damage.
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If the furniture where your gaming console sits features open shelving, making it easy to reach in and grab things, plexiglass or acrylic sheets may be an excellent protective barrier for your entertainment center.
You can buy this at most home improvement stores, making it an easy weekend project. There are some great YouTube tutorials that cover how to work with acrylic or plexiglass and how to install them.
Related post: How to babyproof your TV
Seek higher ground
If your space allows for it, install some wall shelves that are sturdy enough to hold your gaming console out of reach. The console needs to be plugged into the TV to work properly so it can’t be too far away, but some shelving on the same wall as the TV should work fine.
If you do choose shelves, be aware of the console’s cord and where it rests on the wall. It’s possible the cord will attract your baby’s attention instead of the console itself.
You can also store any controllers, extra games, and accessories on these shelves. This makes them accessible for you but totally out of reach for your baby.
Related post: How to Childproof Your Fridge
Lock them out
If all else fails, install magnetic locks on the TV console or entertainment center doors where your gaming system sits.
Your baby can tug at the doors as much as they want, but they won’t open for anything but the magnetic key. Store the keys in a safe place out of your baby’s reach, so only you and your partner can open the furniture doors. Genius parenting hack!
It’s possible that once your baby has tried and failed to open the doors on your furniture a few times, they’ll lose interest and stop trying.
Related post: How To Babyproof Drawers and Cabinets
How do I stop my baby from turning off my Xbox?
If your baby is relentless about shutting off your gaming system, here are a few tips to prevent them from doing so.
Tape it off
Many babies are drawn to electronics because of the flashing lights and noises they emit when pushed. You can solve this problem by taping over the buttons that flash, particularly the power button. Remove the distraction and your baby will lose interest quickly.
Most consoles can be turned on by the controller, so you won’t have to worry about needing to press the power button on the system itself.
While they may not understand immediately, it’s important to teach your baby the appropriate boundaries in your home. Establishing boundaries keeps them safe and teaches them how to respect things that don’t belong to them.
Continue to teach your baby about what’s acceptable to touch and what isn’t. Be firm and assertive, but most of all — be consistent.
While your home may feel more like a baby’s playground these days, there’s still a way to maintain your favorite hobbies and activities. If you’re a gamer-turned-parent, you can have the best of both worlds. With a little creativity and some patience, your gaming console and your baby can live in harmony together.