Many mothers like to have the crib set up several months before their due date. But don't worry if the baby arrives prior to your infant does; tots do good in a bassinet, cradle, or sleeper for your first few months or perhaps months of their lives.
Adjustable mattress height: Most Automobiles let you alter the elevation of the crib mattress by simply raising or lowering the mattress support. The opportunity to reduce the mattress is when your child starts sitting up. As kids get more active and move to pulling up and standing, they can climb and fall 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 stage. Height/weight limits are usually much lower on portable or mini-cribs. Read your product manual carefully and follow recommendations.
Old Automobiles: Cribs made before 1974, when national crib-safety criteria went into effect, are more likely than newer versions to have safety issues. Secondhand cribs may also have splinters, lead paint, stopped (and potentially dangerous) features, or slats which are too far apart. Articles on a crib shouldn't greater than 1/16 of an inch (unless they are over 16 inches high to encourage a canopy); differently, clothing can catch them on and injure or choke an infant. Even models manufactured as recently as 1991 can be dangerous, so if you are borrowing a crib or buying a used one, keep an eye out for these dangers in addition to for sharp edges, protruding metal, anything which can be broken off and spilled on, peeling paint, and cutouts across the rail that can trap your baby's neck or arm. Check the product recalls by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to make sure it has not been recalled.
Safe sleep hints: Get advice about crib bedding and sleep position to lower your child's risk of SIDS.
Bumpers: Crib bumpers -- cushioned padding that attaches to the interior railings of the crib -- are occasionally still included in crib bedding sets, but a number of organizations, including the AAP, today discourage them as a SIDS threat for infants.
Stability: Give the crib a good shake in the store or once you put it together at 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 look for a sturdier crib.)
For a foam mattress, even more significant than depth, though, is high density; weight may be a good indication -- a heavier mattress is thicker than one that's the same size but lighter. (See our buying guide to learn more on buying crib mattresses.)
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 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 in that space.
Space savers: Children short on distance may be interested in mobile or mini-crib options, each of which occupy less space than full-size Automobiles. Some fold or collapse for storage; some have wheels so they can be rolled around the house.
Infants often spend more time at the crib than anyplace else, so while relaxation is important, security is essential. Since most children sleep in a crib until it is time to move into a true bed -- typically between the ages of 3 and 2 -- you'll want a hardy one.
Most new cribs available on the market comply with both mandatory and voluntary safety standards. For starters, be sure yours is correctly assembled and structurally sound; the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports many instances in which Automobiles have come . If this occurs, a baby's head can get trapped in the spaces between the mattress and side rail.
Full-sized cribs, such as convertibles, vary from $110 to $800. Mobile and mini-cribs cost between $100 and $400. Fancier cribs can run $800 to $1,000 or much more.
When establishing a crib, choose a place away from windows, window blinds, and draperies. Babies can strangle on the cords, and mature babies could possibly pull up themselves and drop through the window. When there's a cord on your baby monitor, keep it at least three feet from the crib.
Cribs with drop sides: The principle is simple -- don't use them. The movable railings called fall sides were common on cribs for decades, but might pose a severe hazard to babies. If the drop side detaches or comes loose, then a baby can become entrapped and strangle or suffocate from the distance between the drop side along with the crib mattress. Their sale was banned since 2011.
Be certain the crib makeover is relatively simple to do (check online reviews from parents) which you like the appearance of the new furniture.