Most new cribs on the market comply with the mandatory and voluntary safety standards. For starters, make sure yours is properly assembled and structurally sound; the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports many cases in which cribs have come . If it happens, a kid's head can get trapped in the areas between the mattress and side rail.
Security limits: Crib manufacturers recommend discontinuing use (or turning into the product's next phase , for convertible cribs) when your child reaches a particular height, weight, or developmental phase. Height/weight limits are usually much lower on mobile or mini-cribs. Read your product manual carefully and follow recommendations.
Bumpers: Crib bumpers -- cushioned cushioning that attaches to the interior railings of the crib -- are sometimes still contained in crib bedding collections, but quite a few organizations, including the AAP, now dissuade them as a SIDS hazard for babies.
Versatility: a lot of cribs are designed to convert to a toddler bed, day bed, or even the headboard and footboard for a full size bed. Be sure that the crib makeover is comparatively easy to do (check online reviews from parents) and that you enjoy the appearance of the new furniture.
Frame size: The crib inside ought to snugly adapt a standard crib mattress -- at least 51 3/4 inches by 27 3/8 inches wide. Make sure there is not any space between the surfaces of the mattress and the crib walls. This poses a considerable danger, as infants can get trapped inside that space.
Many mothers like to have the crib set up a few months before their due date. But do not worry if the baby arrives prior to your infant does; tots do good in a bassinet, cradle, or sleeper for the first few months or perhaps months of their lives.
When setting up a crib, choose a place away from windows, window blinds, and draperies. Babies can strangle on the cords, and older babies could possibly pull themselves up and fall through the window. When there's a cord on your baby screen, keep it at least three feet from the crib.
Infants often spend more time in the crib than anyplace else, so while relaxation is important, security is vital. Since most children sleep in a crib until it is time to move into a real bed -- typically between the ages of 3 and 2 -- you will want a hardy one.
For a foam mattress, even more significant than depth, though, is high density; weight can be a good indicator -- a heavier mattress is denser than one that's the exact same size but lighter. (See our purchasing guide to learn more on buying crib mattress.)
Adjustable mattress heightthe majority of cribs allow you to change the elevation of the crib mattress by simply raising or lowering the mattress support. The opportunity to reduce the mattress is when your child begins sitting up. As kids get more active and proceed to pulling up and standing, they could climb and fall from the crib.
Space savers: Children short on distance could possibly be considering portable or mini-crib options, each of which occupy less space than full-size cribs. Some fold or collapse for storage; a few have wheels so they may be wrapped around the house.
Cribs with drop sides: The principle is simple -- do not use them. The movable railings called drop sides were common on cribs for decades, but might pose a severe hazard for babies. If the fall side detaches or comes loose, then a baby can become entrapped and strangle or suffocate in the distance between the drop side and the crib mattress. Their sale has been banned since 2011.
Old cribs: Cribs made before 1974, when federal crib-safety standards went into effect, are somewhat more likely than newer versions to have safety problems. Secondhand cribs might also have splinters, lead paint, stopped (and potentially dangerous) attributes, or slats that are too far apart. Articles on a crib shouldn't higher than 1/16 of an inch (unless they're over 16 inches to support a canopy); differently, clothing can catch on them and injure or choke a baby. Even models fabricated as recently as 1991 could be dangerous, so if you're borrowing a crib or purchasing a used one, keep an eye out for these dangers as well as for sharp edges, protruding metal, anything which may be broken off and choked onpeeling paint, along with cutouts across the rail which can trap your child's neck or arm. Check the product recalls from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to make sure it has not been recalled.
Stability: Give the crib a good shake in the shop or after you put it together at home. If it wobbles or rattles, it might have been put together improperly. (Although wobbling or rattling could also be a sign that you need to start looking for a sturdier crib.)
Full-sized cribs, including convertibles, range from $110 to $800. Mobile and mini-cribs price between $100 and $400. Fancier cribs can run $800 to $1,000 or a lot more.
Safe sleep recommendations: Get advice about crib bedding and sleep posture to reduce your baby's risk of SIDS.