On-the-Go Safety

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Your toddler may also resist following safety measures on a walk with you. Many 2-year-olds and their parents have heated battles over holding hands. If your child resists, stand your ground. Safety rules are nonnegotiable. Your child won't be able to safely cross streets and parking lots unattended for several more years.

One safety device you might be tempted to try is the child harness or leash. While it may help keep your child out of harm's way, many experts feel that the leash conveys an inappropriate message by using physical force instead of words to keep your child near you.

Another hazard -- and one often overlooked -- is the seemingly mundane trip to the grocery store. Thousands of children under age 4 require emergency treatment each year after falling out of grocery carts, with injuries including fractures and concussions. If there is a safety belt available, strap your child in the cart. And maintain constant supervision; during the minute or two you spend analyzing food labels, your toddler could be wriggling into position for a free-fall.

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