Stability: Give the crib a good shake at the store or once you put it together in your home. If it wobbles or rattles, it may have been put together improperly. (Although wobbling or rattling could also be a sign that you should start looking for a sturdier crib.)
Frame size: The crib inside should snugly adapt a standard crib mattress -- at least 51 3/4 inches by 27 3/8 inches wide. Make sure that there is not any space between the sides of the mattress and the crib walls. This poses a considerable danger, as infants can get trapped inside that area.
Make certain the crib makeover is relatively easy to do (check online reviews from parents) which you like the appearance of the brand new furniture.
Cribs with drop sides: The principle is simple -- do not use them. The movable railings known as fall sides were common on cribs for a long time, but might pose a serious hazard to babies. If the drop side comes or dries loose, then a baby can become entrapped and strangle or suffocate in the space between the drop side along with the crib mattress. Their sale was banned because 2011.
Infants often spend more time in the crib than anyplace else, so while relaxation is important, safety is essential. Since most kids sleep in a crib till it is time to move to a real bed -- normally between the ages of 3 and 2 -- you will want a hardy one.
Old cribs: Cribs made before 1974, when national crib-safety standards went into effect, are somewhat more likely than newer versions to have security issues. Secondhand cribs may also have splinters, lead paint, stopped (and potentially dangerous) features, or slats that are too far apart. Articles 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 on them and injure or choke an infant. Even models manufactured as recently as 1991 could be dangerous, so if you are borrowing a crib or buying a used one, look out for these risks as well as for sharp edges, protruding metal, anything which can be broken off and choked on, peeling paint, along with cutouts along the railing that can trap your baby's neck or arm. Check the item recalls by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to ensure it hasn't been remembered.
Many moms like to have the crib set up a few weeks before their due date. But don't be concerned if the baby arrives prior to your crib does; tots do fine in a bassinet, cradle, or sleeper for the first few weeks or even months of their lives.
Mattresses: The two most common types sold are innerspring and foam and both are available in thicknesses between 3 and 6 inches. To get a foam mattress, even more significant than depth, though, is high density; weight can be a fantastic indication -- a heftier mattress is thicker than one that is the exact same size but lighter. (See our buying guide to learn more on purchasing crib mattresses.)
When setting up a crib, choose a spot away from windows, window blinds, and draperies. Babies can strangle on the cords, and mature infants could possibly pull themselves up and fall through the window. When there's a cable in your baby screen, keep it at least 3 feet from the crib.
Safety limits: Crib manufacturers recommend discontinuing use (or converting to the product's next stage, for convertible cribs) when your child reaches a specific height, weight, or developmental phase. Height/weight limits are generally much lower on portable or mini-cribs.
Bumpers: Crib bumpers -- cushioned padding that attaches to the inside railings of the crib -- are occasionally still contained in crib bedding collections, but a number of associations, including the AAP, today dissuade them as a SIDS hazard for babies.
Most new cribs available on the market comply with both mandatory and voluntary safety standards. For starters, make sure that yours is properly constructed and structurally sound; the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports many instances where Automobiles have come apart. If this happens, a kid's head can get trapped in the spaces between the mattress and side rail.
Adjustable mattress heightthe majority of Automobiles allow you to change the height of the crib mattress simply by raising or lowering the mattress support. The opportunity to reduce the mattress is when your child begins sitting up. As children get more active and proceed to pulling up and standing, they can climb and drop from the crib.
Full-sized cribs, including convertibles, range from $110 to $800. Portable and mini-cribs price between $100 and $400.
Space savers: Children short on space could possibly be considering mobile or mini-crib possibilities, both of which occupy less space than full-size cribs. Some fold or collapse for storage; a few have wheels so they can be rolled around the home.
Safe sleep recommendations: Get advice about infant bedding and sleep position to reduce your child's risk of SIDS.