Cribs with drop sides: The principle is simple -- do not use them. The movable railings known as drop sides were more common on toddlers for a long time, but can pose a severe hazard to infants. If the fall side detaches or comes loose, a baby can become entrapped and strangle or suffocate from the space between the drop side and the crib mattress. Their sale was banned because 2011.
Safety limits: Crib manufacturers advocate discontinuing use (or converting to the product's next phase ( for convertible cribs) when your child reaches a specific height, weight, or developmental stage. Height/weight limits are generally much lower on mobile or mini-cribs.
To get a foam mattress, more significant than thickness, however, is high density; weight can be a good indicator -- a heavier mattress is denser than one that is the same size but lighter. (See our buying guide for more information on purchasing crib mattresses.)
Old Automobiles: Cribs made before 1974, when national crib-safety criteria went into effect, are more likely than newer versions to have safety problems. Secondhand cribs might also have splinters, lead paint, discontinued (and potentially dangerous) features, or slats which are too far apart. Slats should be no longer than 2 3/8 inches apart (about the size of a soda can) to protect against a baby's mind from getting suck. Articles on a crib should no greater than 1/16 of an inch (unless they're over 16 inches to encourage a canopy); differently, clothes can catch them on and injure or choke a baby. Even versions fabricated as recently as 1991 can be dangerous, so if you are borrowing a crib or purchasing a used one, look out for these risks in addition to for sharp edges, protruding metal, anything that can be broken off and spilled on, peeling paint, and cutouts across the railing which can trap your baby's neck or arm. Check the product recalls by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to ensure it hasn't been recalled.
Infants often spend more time in the crib than anywhere else, so while comfort is important, safety is essential. Since most children sleep in a crib until it is time to move to a real bed -- typically between the ages of 3 and 2 -- you will want a sturdy one.
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. Make sure 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 area.
Most new cribs on the market comply with the mandatory and voluntary safety standards. Read crib safety tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). For starters, be sure that yours is correctly assembled and structurally sound; the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports many cases in which cribs have come . If this occurs, a baby's head can get trapped in the areas between the mattress and side rail.
Many mothers like to have the crib set up a few weeks before their due date. But do not be concerned if the baby arrives prior to your crib does; tots do good in a bassinet, cradle, or sleeper for the first several months or perhaps months of their lives.
When setting up a crib, choose a spot away from windows, window blinds, and draperies. Babies can strangle on the cords, and mature babies could possibly pull themselves up and fall through the window. If there's a cable in your baby monitor, keep it at least 3 feet in the crib.
Safe sleep recommendations: Get tips about infant bedding and sleep posture to reduce your child's risk of SIDS.
Adjustable mattress height: Most cribs let you change the elevation of the crib mattress by simply raising or lowering the mattress support. The time to lower the mattress is when your child begins sitting up. As children get more active and move to pulling up and standing, they can climb and drop out of the crib.
Bumpers: Crib bumpers -- cushioned cushioning that attaches to the inside railings of the crib -- are occasionally still included in crib bedding collections, but a number of associations, including the AAP, now discourage them as a SIDS hazard for babies.
Be sure that the crib makeover is comparatively simple to perform (check online reviews from parents) which you like the appearance of the new furniture.
Space savers: Parents short on space may be considering mobile or mini-crib options, each of which occupy less space compared to full-size cribs. Some fold or collapse for storage; some have wheels so that they can be wrapped around the house.
Stability: Give the crib a fantastic shake at the store or after you put it together at home. If it wobbles or rattles, it may have been placed together improperly.
Full-sized cribs, such as convertibles, range from $110 to $800.