Most new cribs on the market comply with both voluntary and mandatory safety standards. For starters, be sure that yours is properly assembled and structurally sound; the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports many instances where Automobiles have come . If this occurs, a kid's head can get trapped in the spaces between the mattress and side rail.
Frame size: The crib inside should snugly accommodate a standard crib mattress -- at least 51 3/4 inches by 27 3/8 inches wide. Make sure that there is no space between the surfaces of the mattress and the crib walls. This poses a considerable danger, as babies can get trapped inside that space.
Infants often spend more time in the crib than anyplace else, so while relaxation is important, safety is vital. As most children sleep in a crib till it's time to move to a true bed -- typically between the ages of 2 and 3 -- you will want a hardy one.
Space savers: Parents short on space may be interested in portable or mini-crib possibilities, both of which occupy less space compared to full-size Automobiles. Some fold or collapse for storage; some have wheels so they can be wrapped around the house.
Old Automobiles: Cribs made before 1974, when federal crib-safety standards went into effect, are somewhat more likely than newer models to have security problems. Secondhand cribs might also have splinters, lead paint, stopped (and potentially dangerous) features, or slats which are too far apart. Slats should be no more than 2 3/8 inches apart (about the size of a soda can) to protect against a baby's head from becoming suck. Posts on a crib shouldn't greater than 1/16 of an inch (unless they are over 16 inches to support a canopy); otherwise, clothes can catch them on and injure or choke a baby. Even versions fabricated as recently as 1991 can be unsafe, so if you're borrowing a crib or buying a used one, keep an eye out for these dangers in addition to for sharp edges, protruding metal, anything that may be broken off and spilled on, peeling paint, and cutouts along the rail which can trap your baby's neck or arm. Examine the product recalls by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to ensure it hasn't been recalled.
When setting up a crib, choose a place away from windows, window blinds, and draperies. Infants can strangle on the cords, and mature infants could possibly pull themselves up and drop through the window. If there's a cord on your baby monitor, keep it at least 3 feet in the crib.
Cribs with drop sides: The principle is simple -- don't use them. The movable railings called drop sides were common on toddlers for decades, but might pose a severe hazard to infants. If the drop side detaches or comes loose, a baby can become entrapped and strangle or suffocate in the distance between the drop side along with the crib mattress. Their sale was banned because 2011.
Full-sized Automobiles, including convertibles, vary from $110 to $800. Portable and mini-cribs cost between $100 and $400.
Make sure the crib makeover is comparatively simple to perform (check online reviews from parents) which you like the appearance of the new furniture.
Adjustable mattress height: Most Automobiles allow you to alter the elevation of the crib mattress simply by raising or lowering the mattress support. The time to lower the mattress is if your child starts sitting up. As kids get more active and proceed to pulling up and standing, they could climb and fall out of the crib.
Bumpers: Crib bumpers -- cushioned padding 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, today discourage them as a SIDS hazard for babies.
For a foam mattress, even more important than depth, though, is high density; weight may be a fantastic indication -- a heftier mattress is thicker than one that's the same size but lighter. (See our buying guide to learn more on purchasing crib mattress.)
Stability: Give the crib a fantastic shake at the shop or after you put it together in your home. If it wobbles or rattles, it might have been placed together improperly.
Security limits: Crib manufacturers advocate 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.
Many moms like to have the crib set up a few weeks before their due date. But don't worry if the baby arrives before your infant does; tots do fine in a bassinet, cradle, or sleeper for your first several weeks or even months of their lives.
Safe sleep hints: Get advice about infant bedding and sleep position to reduce your child's risk of SIDS.