How to find the right crib mattress for your baby

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Having
a baby on the way means that it’s time to go shopping and buy everything that baby will need. The most important things to buy are a cot (crib), a
mattress, and bed linen. Which babycrib mattress is better to choose for a newborn? In this issue, many young
parents make many mistakes. Therefore, we decided to write a detailed guide for
choosing the ideal baby mattress. 

How to find the right crib mattress for your baby

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In
our review, we will consider all the most popular types of children’s
mattresses, talk about the properties of stuffing materials, and touch upon the issues of rigidity. In conclusion, the recommendations of
pediatricians will be given, which is also very important when choosing a
mattress for a newborn.

Types
of baby crib mattresses

Which
mattress to choose for a newborn in the crib? This question puzzles many young
parents. It is generally believed that it is best to sleep on a soft surface –
it is comfortable, lush and warm. And such concepts are fundamentally wrong,
since a newbornchild must sleep on a hard base – this ensures the correct development of
the spine.

But
before talking about the rigidity of mattresses, you should talk about their
varieties. In our review, we will touch on the following types of mattresses:

  • ·        
    Spring-free;
  • ·        
    Spring;
  • ·        
    Two-sided;
  • ·        
    Mattresses are cocoons.

Springless
Mattresses

Price
Range: $40- $300

Simple
springless mattresses for a crib will be the best choice. Their design does not
provide for any springs, so they are absolutely safe. The basis of these
mattresses is plastic fillers with different levels of elasticity. In addition,
some models have orthopedic properties – this allows to ensure the correct
development of the spine and bone system.

Springless MattressesModern
springless mattresses for children are made of hypoallergenic materials and are
equipped with dense covers of natural fabrics. Due to this, children sleep in a
safe environment, on a fairly comfortable and dense surface. Also, when
designing children’s mattresses, attention is paid to the properties of the packing’s
– they must retain heat and retain moisture well. The presence of excellent ventilation
properties is a solid plus, because the child must sleep in a relatively dry
atmosphere, without excess moisture.

Going
a little forward, we can say that it is the springless mattresses that are the
best choice for a baby crib. They are convenient, practical, well endure
physical loads, do not cause allergies and provide the creation of a suitable
surface for a healthy and comfortable sleep.

Spring
Mattresses

Price
Range: $30- $260

Spring
mattresses for children are divided into two categories – classic spring
mattresses and mattresses with independent spring blocks. The first category is
absolutely not suitable for children’s sleep. Classic spring mattresses form a
strongly bendable surface, which harms the children’s spine and does not
contribute to its proper development. It is not surprising that after sleeping
on such mattresses, children develop scoliosis.

Spring Mattress

As
for mattresses with independent spring blocks, they are absolutely safe. They
have orthopedic properties, provide good back support and are able to adjust to
the shape of the body. But this entire splendor is underscored by one drawback
– spring mattresses with independent spring blocks are not suitable for
newborns. But older children can sleep on them – from about 12 years old.

Double
Sided Mattresses

Price
Range: $60- $400

Two-sided
mattresses for newborns are universal options. They have at once two surfaces
used for sleep. One side of them is rigid, just for newborns. As for the second
side, it is of medium stiffness – for older children, from three years old. For
what it is needed – will be said a little later. Also there are bilateral
mattresses with a different ratio of the rigidity of the parties. For example,
one side can be soft, and the other – medium stiffness.

Double Sided Mattresses

Close
relatives of double-sided mattresses with different levels of rigidity of the
parties are two-season mattresses. They are made in such a way that one side of
them keeps the heat well, and the second one is freely blown, ensuring the
creation of comfortable conditions for children’s sleep.

Mattresses-cocoons

Price
Range: $60- $200

Cocoon
mattresses are the development of French neonatologists. They have an oval
shape, and their inner part is somewhat deepened, creating for the child a cozy
space for sleeping and rest. Thanks to this design, the newborn’s body is
supported from all sides at once, as it happens in the womb of the mother.

The
mattress-cocoon for newborns is often equipped with buckles and carrying
handles. This ensures the safety of children and allows you to easily transport
the cocoon from place to place. That is, it is not a full-fledged mattress, but
a supplement that can be installed anywhere. The baby can sleep in the cocoon
until four years, after which it should be shifted to the main mattress.

Cocoons
provide soft support of the spine, slightly bending it – it is in the same
position as in prenatal development. According to French neonatologists, this
provision is the most optimal – the spine develops more correctly and
harmoniously. In addition, a slightly curved back contributes to the
normalization of muscle tone and reduction of colic.

What is the optimal mattress hardness?

Newborns
should sleep on a fairly hard surface or on a medium-strength mattress. At the
same time, many parents adhere to the opposite opinion that the child needs a
soft and comfortable bed. This is fundamentally wrong, because on a soft
surface the spine assumes a concave shape. And such a bend just hinders the
proper development of the child. If the child sleeps on a hard surface, his
spine will assume the correct S-shape.

Since the newborn has a small weight, it is
possible to buy a baby crib mattress of medium stiffness for it. A good support
is provided by the rigidity “below average”. The stuffing materials
can be any, preferably natural and hypoallergenic. The main thing is that they
provide a suitable level of rigidity. But you should avoid buying mattresses
with independent spring blocks, as they cannot ensure the creation of
conditions for the proper development of the spine and bone system.

Choosing a mattress material for a newborn

The
choice of a mattress for a newborn should begin with the choice of a filler
mattress. As we have already said, we are boldly throwing spring models aside –
we choose our choice only on the springless mattresses made of coconut fiber,
polyurethane foam, latex and struttopayer.

Polyurethane foam

Polyurethane
foam is one of the most common materials for stuffing children’s mattresses.
Initially, it is too soft, so additional components are added to its structure,
giving it stiffness. Only after that it is suitable for the production of
children’s mattresses. Penopolyurethane rarely causes allergies, has orthopedic
properties, but it retains too much moisture, which is inadmissible for a baby crib.

Latex

Struttofiber
has a decent level of rigidity, but it is rarely used in children’s mattresses.
But natural latex is much more common. It does not cause allergic reactions, it
is well ventilated, it does not create conditions for the reproduction of
bacteria. In its pure form it is not used because of its softness. Therefore,
the latex is interleaved with layers of more solid packing’s, which makes it
possible to create children’s mattresses of medium stiffness.

Coconut Coir

The
most optimal version of the stuffing for a baby crib mattress is coconut fiber
(coir). It does not deteriorate or rot, does not support the multiplication of
harmful bacteria, does not cause allergies, it is well ventilated and retains
heat. This fiber is rigid, but resilient, as it is made from a soaked and dried
coconut shell with integration from natural latex. Therefore, it is the best
suited for creating a mattress for newborns.

Coconut
mattress for newborns perfectly supports the back, creates comfortable
conditions for sleep and promotes the proper development of the spine. Sleep on
this mattress can be from birth and up to three years. Starting with three
years, you should choose a softer mattress. If you want to save money, feel
free to buy double-sided mattresses made of latex and coconut coir. Up to three
years the child will sleep on the side of coconut fiber, and after three years
– on the side of latex (medium hardness).

When
buying a mattress, pay attention to the presence of a removable cover.
Otherwise you will have to buy a mattress pad. Optimum materials for covers are
jacquard and spunbond.

Determine
the size of the mattress

The
choice of baby crib mattress for a newborn in size does not cause any
difficulties. The width and length should be such that the mattress matches the
crib exactly. As for the height, it should not exceed 10 cm; the optimal figure
is 5-9 cm. If the mattress is too high, then later, when the baby learns to get
up, he can fall out of the crib.

For
a more exact match of sizes, buying cribs of non-standard sizes is not
recommended – otherwise you will have to order the manufacture of the mattress
by individual measures, which will result in a substantial amount.

WARNING!

Under
circumstances should you buy a used baby crib mattress. Older mattresses are
known to leak toxic gases. This can be extremely problematic for your child and
in some cases can even cause SIDS (Sudden infant death syndrome).

Pediatrician’s
recommendations for choosing a mattress

Pediatricians
recommend choosing high and medium hardness mattresses for newbornbabies. A solid base will allow the spine to develop as it is conceived by
nature. And the proper development of the spine is the guarantee of the
excellent health of the whole organism as a whole. Do not worry that the child
will experience discomfort, lying on a hard mattress. In the end, the baby crib
mattress is not completely solid, like concrete, but elastic. Yes, and over it
will lay a sheet and a relatively soft cover. As for soft mattresses based on
cheap foam rubber or cotton wool, their purchases should be avoided, since they
can damage even an adult. If the child has any abnormalities in development, as
well as diseases of the bone and nervous system, one should get an orthopedic
consultation – he will help to choose the optimal stiffness of the mattress.

valplowman

Valerie, also known as The Babywise Mom, is the mother to four children. She has been blogging on Babywise and general parenting since 2007. She has a degree in technical writing and loves using those skills to help parents be the best parents they can be! Read her book, The Babywise Mom Nap Guide, to get help on sleep from birth through the preschool years. You can also find her writing at Babywise.life, Today Parenting, and Her View From Home. Read more about Valerie and her family on the About page. Follow her on FacebookPinterest, and Instagram for more tips and helps.

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