Baby Crib Features

During the first few months of life, your baby will spend up to 20 hours each day asleep. That’s why it’s so important to buy a crib that’s comfy and safe. Search for these features when you shop for cribs:

  • You don’t need the priciest crib. Safety is more important than the design or price of the crib.
  • Buy new if you can. If you do get a used crib, make sure it's a recent model year and check the Consumer Product Safety Commission's crib web site for recalls.
  • Avoid antique cribs, hand-me-down cribs, or cribs with drop-down side rails.
  • Measure the slats. They shouldn't be more than 2 3/8 inches apart so your baby can’t slip through or get a limb or head stuck.
  • Also measure the corner posts. They should be less than 1/16 of an inch high so your baby’s clothing won’t get caught.
  • Look for any broken edges that could cut your baby and cutouts in the headboard that could trap your baby's head.
  • Check for other dangers, such as chipped or peeling paint and loose or missing screws and other hardware.
  • Buy a firm mattress to help prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
  • Make sure the mattress fits tightly against the crib frame. You shouldn't be able to fit a finger down in between them.
  • Never place your baby's crib next to a window. Blind cords, screens, and other window treatments pose hazards.
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson, MD on September 02, 2014



Consumer Product Safety Commission: "Crib Safety Tips."

Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association: "Cribs."

Nemours Foundation: “All About Sleep.”

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