There are so many crib styles available on the market nowadays, so how do you choose which one is safe for your baby? Thankfully, some guidelines will help you find a crib that’s not only aesthetically appealing but will also keep your baby from harm.

Bar Spacing
The bars on your baby’s crib need to be spaced no more than 2 and 3/8” apart or 60mm to keep your baby from getting their head stuck through the bars. If you’re borrowing a crib or purchasing a used one, always be sure to measure the bar spacing to make sure it complies.

Mattress
The mattress of your baby’s crib needs to be firm and not sag underneath your baby’s weight, This keeps your baby from getting their face stuck if they were to roll over, saving them from suffocation. Make sure there is no space whatsoever between the crib walls and the mattress to keep your baby from slipping

Height
The distance between the top rail of the crib and the mattress should be twenty-six inches or 66cm for a newborn. As your child grows, you need to lower the bed, to keep your baby from crawling out of their crib.

Headboards and Footboards
Decorative headboards and footboards with carved designs are cute, but they are also dangerous. Your child could get their arm, leg, or head stuck in these decorations, so make sure the headboards and footboards are solid.

No Drip Rails
Cribs with drip rails can easily become unlatched by faulty or worn out hardware, which will allow your baby to roll right out of the crib.

Crib Bumpers
While they might seem like a good idea because they are marketed to keep your baby from hitting themselves on the corners of the crib, using them is not advisable. Because older babies can use them to climb out of the crib. They also pose a suffocation risk to younger babies.

Toys and Stuffed Animals
You should keep toys and stuffed animals out of your baby’s crib when they’re not under constant supervision. Babies can use them to get a leg up and over the rail of the crib. Bulky comforters, pillows, and heavy blankets can also cause severe injury or suffocation to your baby.

Away from Direct Light
Your baby’s crib should be put away from direct sunlight and drafts where your baby might experience discomfort. Cribs can be uncomfortably hot if placed too close to a heating source. Also, make sure there are no strings from curtains or blinds your baby could get into. These pose a strangulation risk.

Extra Support is Unnecessary
Babies don’t need any extra rolled up blankets, support, or other commercial devices to keep them on their backs while they sleep. These will clutter up the crib, become cumbersome to your baby, and even pose a suffocation risk.

1 meter tall rule
When your baby has reached three feet or a meter tall, it’s time for them to move from the crib to a bed. If you’re worried that your baby might fall out of bed or otherwise injure themselves, then you may want to put a mattress on the floor to start.

New is always better
When in doubt, it’s better to purchase a new crib rather than a used one because newer cribs do not contain hazardous materials such as lead paint, dangerous decorations, and drip rails. Buying the most modern equipment will keep your baby safe, but always check out used cribs thoroughly if you can’t or don’t want to purchase a new crib.

And finally, if your parental instincts say it’s not safe, then it’s not safe. The only thing that should be in the crib with your baby is their night clothes and an approved baby blanket that is lightweight and can easily be moved on or off by your baby. Any other item should be kept away from the crib and only used with supervision.

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