Adjustable mattress heightthe majority of cribs let you alter the height of the crib mattress simply by raising or lowering the mattress support. The opportunity to lower the mattress is when your child starts sitting up. As children get more active and move to pulling up and standing, they can climb and drop from the crib.
Most new cribs available on the market comply with both mandatory and voluntary safety standards. Read crib safety tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). For starters, make sure yours is properly assembled and structurally sound; the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports many instances where cribs have come apart. If this occurs, a baby's head can get trapped in the spaces between the mattress and side rail.
Infants often spend more time in the crib than anywhere else, so while relaxation is important, safety is vital. Since most children sleep in a crib till it's time to move into a real bed -- normally between the ages of 2 and 3 -- you will need a hardy one.
Space savers: Children short on distance may be interested in mobile or mini-crib possibilities, both of which take up less space than full-size cribs. Some fold or collapse for storage; a few have wheels so that they can be wrapped around the home.
To get a foam mattress, more important than depth, however, is high density; weight may be a fantastic indication -- a heavier mattress is thicker than one that's the same size but lighter. (See our buying guide for more information on purchasing crib mattresses.)
When establishing a crib, select a spot away from windows, window blinds, and draperies. Babies can strangle on the cords, and older infants could possibly pull up themselves and fall through the window. When there's a cable in your infant screen, keep it at least 3 feet in the crib.
Full-sized cribs, such as convertibles, range from $110 to $800. Portable and mini-cribs price between $100 and $400. Fancier cribs can run $800 to $1,000 or much more.
Safe sleep hints: Get tips about infant bedding and sleep position to reduce your baby's risk of SIDS.
Security limits: Crib manufacturers recommend discontinuing use (or turning into the product's next stage( for convertible cribs) when your child reaches a particular height, weight, or developmental stage. Height/weight limits are generally much lower on portable or mini-cribs. Read your product manual carefully and follow instructions.
Cribs with drop sides: The principle is simple -- do not use them. The movable railings called fall sides were common on toddlers for decades, but can pose a severe hazard for infants. If the drop side comes or dries loose, a baby can become entrapped and strangle or suffocate in the distance between the fall side along with the crib mattress. Their sale has been banned since 2011.
Old cribs: Cribs made before 1974, when federal crib-safety criteria went into effect, are more likely than newer models to have safety issues. Secondhand cribs might also have splinters, lead paint, stopped (and possibly dangerous) attributes, or slats that are too far apart. Posts on a crib shouldn't higher than 1/16 of an inch (unless they're over 16 inches to support a canopy); otherwise, clothing can catch them on and injure or choke a baby. Even versions manufactured as recently as 1991 could be unsafe, so if you're borrowing a crib or purchasing a used one, look out for these dangers as well as for sharp edges, protruding metal, anything that can be broken off and choked on, peeling paint, and cutouts along the rail which can trap your child's neck or arm. Examine the item recalls from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to make sure it hasn't been recalled.
Frame size: The crib interior ought to snugly accommodate a standard crib mattress -- at least 51 3/4 inches long by 27 3/8 inches wide. Ensure there is not any distance between the surfaces of the mattress and the crib walls. This poses a significant danger, as infants can get trapped inside that space.
Versatility: a lot of cribs are intended to convert to a toddler bed, day bed, or even the headboard and footboard for a full size bed. Make certain the crib makeover is relatively simple to do (check online reviews from parents) which you enjoy the look of the new furniture.
Many moms like to have the crib set up several weeks before their due date. But don't worry if the baby arrives before your crib does; tots do good in a bassinet, cradle, or sleeper for your first several months or even months of their lives.
Stability: Give the crib a fantastic shake in the store 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 indication that you need to start looking for a sturdier crib.)
Bumpers: Crib bumpers -- cushioned cushioning that attaches to the inside railings of the crib -- are sometimes still included in crib bedding sets, but quite a few organizations, including the AAP, now discourage them as a SIDS hazard for babies.