The baby crib takes centerstage when we are designing our baby nursery. We tend to give a lot of thought to style, color, size and placement of the crib. However, we need to have baby crib safety as our number one consideration.
When it comes to the crib...bare is best
We love all those adorable baby bedding sets we see in the magazines. Lots of coordinated multi-piece sets that include things like:
- Fitted crib sheet
- Crib skirt
- Bumper pads
- Crib rail pads
- Crib size comforters
- Crib size blankets
- Tulle crib canopy
While that all looks totally awesome, when it comes to baby safety, a bare crib is best. Baby’s do not need anything but a firm mattress and a safely designed crib to keep them safe while sleeping.
Crib safety guidelines:
Crib safety guidelines changed in 2011. At that time, it was determined that cribs should not have drop sides of any sort. New cribs since then have been designed to have stationary sides.
Because drop sides have been banned, it is illegal to sell, buy or donate a crib that has this feature. Just because Aunt Jean has an heirloom crib that she wants you to have, you should for the safety of your baby, politely turn down her offer.
Other key points to know about crib safety design:
- The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reommends to not use a crib that is over 10 years old due to changes in safey guidelines
- Look for a Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) Seal for assurance that any baby crib you puchase was tested and past their safety regulations
- Be sure that the distance between slats or rails are no more than 2 3/8″ (6 centimeters), This protects your baby from falling out or getting their head trapped between slats
- Corner posts should be flush with headboard/footboard or not more than 1/16″ high to prevent baby from getting their clothes hooked.
- Be sure that the headboard and foot board do not have cutouts that could trap baby’s head.
- Check to be sure that the crib has not been recalled by the manufacturer.
- Buy only the firmest crib mattress you can find. Check it by firmly pressing down on all sides and the middle of the mattress. The mattress should hold firm, yet spring back quickly.
- Ensure that the crib mattress fits snug in the crib. You want to be sure your little one cannot get trapped between the mattress and sides of the crib.
- Check all rails and sides for peeling paint or finish.
- Be sure you have ALL the parts before assembling the crib.
- Do not use anything but the manufacturers supplied parts and hardware.
- Follow the manufacturers direction completely to assemble the crib
- Retain the paperwork and instructions for the crib. If you disassemble the crib for storage, be sure to keep the paperwork and instructions with the crib for possible future assembly.
- Frequently check all hardware and screws and tighten if needed