Parents in the UK are advised by the NHS to have their baby sleep in the same room as them for the first six months of their lives. This is predominantly to provide reassurance to baby that mum and dad are close by and they are not alone. It’s also to make life easier for feeding and check that baby is sleeping on their back.
Most parents opt for a moses basket or co-sleeping crib for this time period. The majority of products on offer in the market will come with a mattress provided that is approved by government sleeping standards.
What to look for
The Lullaby Trust recommends that babies sleep on a firm and flat mattress, with no pillow. The use of a pillow has been shown to increase the risk of SIDS (Sudden infant death syndrome) in children under the age of 18 months upto 2.5 times.
When looking at the mattress, make sure it fits in the moses basket or crib properly and has no lumps or bumps. If you are using the same basket or crib for a second child or giving away to a friend, it’s important to buy a new mattress to ensure it’s firm for the second child.
Using a mattress protector is recommended for when baby is sleeping. That way, if they dribble, are sick or have milk running down their cheek, the mattress will stay protected. We also advise placing a muslin cloth underneath the baby’s head for an extra layer of protection that can easily be removed if it becomes wet.
When looking at what to place on top of the baby, it’s important to consider the time of year and temperature of the room. Much like adults, if it’s a hot summer night, your baby isn’t going to want to be wrapped in layers of blankets, vests and sleepsuits as they will become too hot.
Start off with one blanket or sheet and build up as you need to. Always use cotton sheets or wool blankets with visible holes in case the baby wriggles in their sleep and the material moves over their face. This way, the baby will still be able to breathe. Avoid materials like fleece blankets as they are not breathable and could be linked to SIDS.
Make sure you tuck sheets firmly underneath the mattress and place baby at the foot of their crib or basket. That way, they can only wriggle upwards and not downwards – therefore, reducing the risk of suffocation.
Moving into a cot
From the age of six months, most parents will take their babies out of moses baskets or cribs in their bedroom and place them into a cot in their own room or nursery.
It’s even more important to invest in a good quality mattress at this stage as it’s when your baby is going through a growth spurt and they need good support for their spine.
When purchasing a mattress, again ensure that it is flat, firm and advisably, new. Select the right size for your cot, ensuring there are no gaps down the sides of your mattress and cot bigger than 3mm.
Look out for codes BS 1877-10:2011 + A1:2012 when purchasing a baby mattress and bedding. These are to show products are approved and fit for purpose by British Standards.
To help your little ones grow up safe and strong, we at Silentnight have developed the Safe Nights range for babies and toddlers, providing foam and chemical free products.
The mattress range is made with 100% recyclable and sustainable Eco Comfort fillings, making them extra-breathable for your baby.
They come with washable covers to make cleaning them easy and are hypoallergenic to help combat allergens.
- Safe Nights Superior: luxury mini-pocket mattress with a natural lambswool support system that’s responsive to changes and movement in the body. Shop Safe Nights Superior Mattress
- Safe Nights Luxury: 3D meshing allows for greater airflow, while the mini-pocket spring system supports and nurtures growing bodies. Shop the Safe Nights Luxury Mattress
- Safe Nights Airflow: Comes with 3D meshing to promote comfort, support and pressure relief for your little one. Shop Safe Nights Airflow Mattress
- Safe Nights Essentials: All the basics your little one needs for a great night’s sleep. Shop Safe Nights Essentials Mattress
Shop the range online and let us know if you have any questions via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
For more information click here to visit Lullaby Trust.