Standards[ edit ] As an example of improving safety of infant bed designs, the U. Consumer Product Safety Commission has set standards for infant beds sold since Since this time U.
The sides are too high for a baby to climb and provide no footholds. Technical standards for infant beds include considerations such as the materials used and preventing hand and head entrapment. Standards for infant beds have been specified in Australia and New Zealand,  Europe,  the United States  and internationally. Falls To prevent injuries such as concussion and bone fractures from falls when trying to climb out, footholds are not permitted.
Minimum cot side heights are defined for various mattress positions. Strangulation Infants can become trapped and strangled if their clothing gets caught on parts of a cot that stick out, or if their head becomes trapped between gaps.
Neither gaps large enough for a child's head nor protrusions are permitted. Suffocation Babies lack the motor skills or strength to turn their heads should they roll into something that obstructs their breathing.
They can become trapped and suffocate if they fall into gaps created by ill-fitting or additional mattresses. Babies can also suffocate if the mattress is too soft. Entrapment Infants can suffer injuries to their arms and legs if they become trapped between gaps.
Gaps small enough for a limb to become trapped are not permitted. Some older cribs contained a drop gate or drop side , a side which lowers to ease the process of putting the child into the bed, but can be raised again to restore the integrity of the enclosure. However, assembly problems and malfunctioning hardware on drop gates can cause the formation of gaps, which have been attributed to infant deaths and other major injuries.
In June , the United States implemented new safety standards requiring all infant beds manufactured and sold in the country to have fixed sides.
In their portable form the beds generally don't feature a dropside, and portability factors are emphasised. Portacots are often made from plastics, are often smaller and fold into a compact package.
At the turn of the century, the cloth nappies were back in and the disposable variety were out, having fallen out of favour on environmental grounds. Back at home, the fabric lining can be removed and popped in the wash. We couldn't wait to get the lid off.
Rather than bars, they will have breathable mesh sides with an aperture too small for any finger to fit into less than 5mm by the standards. Standards for folding infant beds exist for Australia and New Zealand,  Europe  and international  adopted by various organisations including the American National Standards Institute.
Convertible cribs or convertible cots that can be converted into a standard sized bed as the child grows larger have become increasingly popular due to a longer useful life for the furniture. By removing both sides it becomes a toddler bed with unusually high head and foot boards , or removing just one side it becomes a daybed.
Although in the U. They may include a top, generally made of plastic or metal, to prevent a child from climbing out.
Use[ edit ] An infant bed is typically used after it is no longer safe to leave the baby in a bassinet.
They have a lower center of gravity , more mass, a broader base of support and can hold a larger baby than a bassinet. Infant beds are more stable than bassinets and as such become desirable when a baby can roll, transferring inertia with their actions; a bassinet may tip, an infant bed won't without concerted effort.
A baby lying on an elevated mattress in an infant bed with traditional crib bumpers Placing a child into an infant bed can put strain on a caretaker's back as they typically have a mass between To reduce the strain on those operating an infant bed, many infant beds feature: The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that infants under 12 months share a room but not a bed with their parents, as this has shown to be protective against sudden infant death syndrome SIDS.
Other sleep environment factors include supine positioning back sleeping , use of a firm sleep surface, breastfeeding, consideration of a pacifier dummy , and avoidance of soft bedding, overheating, and exposure to tobacco smoke. However, neither mattress materials  nor using a second-hand mattress  affect SIDS risk. It is common to place a waterproof membrane between the mattress and the bedding to prevent uncontained bed wetting from damaging the mattress.
Bed sheets ought to fit the mattress tightly so that the child cannot become entangled and suffocate; a common safety recommendation is to short sheet the bed. Older children can use items such as pillows and toys to construct a platform to facilitate escape, defeating the major design criteria and endangering the child. An infant bed with raised mattress, mobile and now-discouraged traditional crib bumpers Bumpers cushioning are marketed to keep children from bumping against the hard sides and hurting themselves or becoming entrapped between the crib slats; breathable bumpers are intended to reduce the risk of suffocation.
In fact, the sale of traditional crib bumpers has been banned in Chicago and Maryland, with the exemption of mesh alternatives or ones that wrap along the crib rails. Children's product safety non-profit, Kids In Danger is actively working to ban the sale of traditional crib bumpers in Illinois and throughout the country.
Mobiles are musical toys to soothe the baby to sleep, but should be removed before the child can stand 8 to 12 months of age. Mirrors are to keep the children entertained while awake in the bed.
With decreasing technology prices and increasing house sizes,  it has become increasingly common to have a baby monitor nearby so as to alert the caretaker when the child awakens. Without either professional endorsement or scientific evidence that they prevent SIDS, apnea monitors are available to alert the caregiver if the baby stops breathing.
When your child is ready to crawl out of bed without any help, you can remove the sides of the bed. A Guide for Health Professionals leaflet. These come in either white or cream.
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