From interviewing 20 different OBGYNs and drinking green smoothies every morning while you’re pregnant to extensive product safety research, making sure baby is getting the best start possible is a high priority for parents everywhere!
New babies can snooze up to 75% of the day (if you’re lucky)—making creating a safe sleeping environment one of the most important steps parents can take to ensure their little one’s safety. In addition to helping to ensure that baby gets the best sleep possible, a safe sleep environment can help reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
The good news is that the death rate from SIDS is at an all-time low*; however, the rate of accidental suffocation is still increasing and remains the leading cause of death among infants between one month and one year of age. By spreading awareness and providing a few tips on how to create a safe sleeping environment, we hope to help caregivers everywhere keep their babies safer:
- Do not purchase a drop side crib (that is a crib with a side that moves up and down) as they were banned in June 2011 and do not meet crib safety standards. They are not sold in stores anymore, but still avoid purchasing them secondhand.
- Start using your crib with the mattress on the highest position for easy access to your child. As your child grows and begins to stand, be sure to lower the mattress support to the middle and third positions for ultimate crib safety. Keep your crib assembly instructions handy even after the crib is put together to make adjustments are a breeze!
- Do not put any soft bedding, pillows, or stuffed animals in the crib with your child to avoid creating a suffocation hazard for your baby. A bare crib is best—an encasement, mattress pad, and fitted sheet are all you need to create a cozy, yet safe, sleeping environment.
- Always place baby on his back to sleep.
- Purchase crib bedding that limits allergens in the nursery to help to eliminate bed bugs, dust mites, pollen and more.
- Do not place the crib near a window with blinds that have cords or strings—these become hazardous when a standing child can grab them. The same goes for baby monitor cords.
- Choose a dresser that passes the voluntary tip-over standards for nursery furniture and comes with a wall mounting kit for added safety. Exploratory toddlers often look at dressers as a climbing challenge to be conquered and these extra measures can help ensure that your curious little monkey stays safe throughout all of her adventures.
- Check out the Consumer Product Safety Commission website for the latest updates on product safety and Baby Safety Zone for baby safety tips for every room.
There’s so much to do before baby arrives, but we hope these tips will help you give your little one the best start possible.