Baby Crib Bedding Safety

Overview

Crib bedding comes in a variety of adorable colors and patterns to coordinate with your baby’s nursery, but these cute crib bedding sets can be dangerous to your baby. The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that 900 Sudden Infant Death Syndrome deaths each year are actually caused by soft bedding and suffocation. While you may want your nursery to be stylish, keeping your baby safe is much more important. Use common sense and recommendations to know how to make you child’s crib bedding safer.

Using Blankets

Instead of using blankets and comforters to keep your baby warm at night, invest in several blanket sleepers so that your baby can stay warm without the help of a heavy blanket that could pose a suffocation risk. If you must use a blanket, choose a thin one. The CPSC recommends that in using a blanket, you should slide your baby to the very bottom of the crib so that his feet are touching the bottom rails. Tuck the blanket in at the bottom of the mattress and the two sides, only pulling it as far as the baby’s chest to keep him safe and warm.

Right Fit

The top sheet that comes with your crib bedding set should have elasticized corners that fit snugly around your crib’s mattress. It should be made of a thin material and fit well enough that there aren’t folds and ripples in the sheet. Make sure that you purchase the right size and shape of fitted top sheet for your crib mattress, remembering that specialty cribs may need rounded or oval top sheets instead of the standard rectangle that most bedding sets come with.

Bumper Warning

Crib bumpers are often hotly debated among parents of small babies. Some bumpers that are quilted or made of a pillowy construction are completely unsafe for babies; your baby could roll and get her face stuck in the material, suffocating herself. If you must use a bumper, choose one made of a breathable mesh material. The American Academy of Pediatrics points out that as soon as your child is mobile, you should remove bumper pads so that they aren’t used as steps to help your child escape the crib or topple out.

SIDS Prevention

Thick bedding, pillows, toys and certain bumpers are unsafe for your baby’s crib. The University of Michigan Health System advises the removal of all pillows from your child’s crib. Your infant does not need a pillow in order to be comfortable, and pillows are far too much of a suffocation risk to leave with a sleeping baby. Keep your baby safe by adhering to safety protocol and keeping the crib clear of suffocation hazards to reduce the risk of SIDS.

Safe Environment

It’s important to note that crib bedding doesn’t only pose a suffocation risk. The AAP notes that your baby can overheat under piles of heavy blankets, which can also lead to SIDS. Look for bedding that features breathable material, but also bedding without tassels, laces, strings and other embellishments that could cut off circulation or pose a strangulation hazard. If your baby’s nursery bedding came with a sleep positioner, discard it. “Consumer Reports” cautions against their use. Keep your baby safe by allowing only the bare minimum in his bed.

About this Author

Jae Ireland specializes in keyword research and Internet marketing. Getting her start with a small Internet marketing firm in 2005, she has since designed and written for well over 20 commercial and informational websites. Her areas of interest and expertise include fashion, parenting, home improvement and health and fitness.