There is far more that goes into choosing a baby crib for your new bundle of joy than one that just looks the pretty part. As with everything within proximity of your new baby, the crib needs to be put through a rather rigorous safety check, too.
There are many small things that can cause harm to, and even the death of, your baby. These things are often overlooked by adults not because we don’t care, but rather because we are not looking at the situation from the size of the child or from his level of curiosity.
So once you have done your safety check, do it again – this time more thoroughly. It could save your child’s life! These few pointers could help guide you:
- As cute as it looks, ditch the crib with its cute cut-outs – your child’s head could get stuck in them.
- Ensure no slats are missing and that they are securely in place and not cracked, wobbly or broken. Also, these slats need to be the approved distance from each other, that is 6 centimetres apart.
- Although there is much controversy about the use of a crib with a lowering side, if you insist on this style of crib ensure the side of the crib that lowers has two locks securely in place, one on either end of the lowering side.
- The mattress is an extremely important part of the baby’s crib. Ensure you get a firm one because soft mattresses could play a part in SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). The mattress must also be a tight fit in the crib to prevent your baby from getting stuck between the crib and the mattress. To be sure that the mattress is a tight enough fit, see if you can slide two fingers between the mattress and the crib. If you can do this, the mattress isn’t snug enough.
- Never place baby’s crib next to a window. Blind and curtain cords pose hazards to children.
More time in the crib
More than likely, most babies probably spend more time in their crib than anywhere else. Of course you want it to therefore be really comfortable, but keep in mind that while this is so, safety is essential. And considering most children sleep in their cribs until they move into a proper bed which is ideally between the ages of two and three years old, you’ll also want a sturdy one to see them through this time.
Crib bumpers – SIDS risk?
Crib bumpers are the padding sets that attach to the inside railings of the crib to cushion all four sides. Although these are still a big seller, they are not highly recommended by many people who believe them to be a SIDS risk.
Other vital points to check on when it comes to the safety of your baby’s crib include:
- Ensure all screws and assembly hardware are in place and properly tightened. These should be checked on a regular basis to ensure none have worked themselves loose.
- To make sure baby’s clothes do not get snagged on the crib’s corner posts, choose a crib with corner posts level with the end panels.
- Ensure that mobiles and decorations hanging over the crib area are well secured, including the little decorative attachments, as these can cause a choking hazard if they come apart.
There are many nursery items that can actually cause infant death, but it is commonly believed that infant death can be largely attributed to the baby’s crib and its fittings. Make sure your baby does not become a statistic! Check, check and check again!