Given many of the warnings parents receive regarding baby safety, picking the right crib mattress can be daunting. The following criteria will help you make an informed decision.
Crib mattresses are typically categorized the same as those for older children and adults: innerspring, memory foam, latex, or hybrid (blend of multiple materials). Parents that want a fully organic or natural mattress should look for natural latex or organic mattresses. Again, you’ll want to look for GOTS or GOLS certifications in addition to GREENGUARD Gold as both GOTS and GOLS refer to organic and natural materials classifications.
Memory foam tends to experience the most off-gassing. So, if you want a memory foam or foam-based mattress, be sure that it at least carries a CertiPUR-US certification.
“Some mattresses that you can order online have substituted fiberglass as a cheaper alternative to chemical flame retardants,” Stoiber explains. She goes on to say that “There are concerns that the fiberglass can migrate out of the mattress, especially if you take the cover off. Exposure to fiberglass can lead to skin and respiratory irritation, rashes, as well as damage to the home and property.”
Again, Stoiber stresses the importance of transparency, adding that “It’s a red flag if the company won’t disclose exactly what they are using.”
If your focus is a non-toxic crib mattress, you can’t ignore certifications. At a bare minimum, you want a mattress with GREENGUARD certification. This is considered the top option, as it’s backed by UL—which is considered one of the most comprehensive oversights and standards independent organizations in the United States. And again, for foam mattresses, look for a CertiPUR-US certification at an absolute minimum. When it comes to organic textiles and fibers, prioritize those with GOTS, GOLS, or OEKO-TEX certifications.
While there are other certification organizations, those listed above are the most common and reputable. Just remember, certification doesn’t mean that no off-gassing occurs. These labels simply mean that the amount of VOCs released is lower than the levels considered hazardous by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration (OSHA).
Research shows that a firmer mattress will reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), so if you’re strictly buying a mattress for the crib stage, you’ll want a firm option.
Dual-use mattresses (flippable models with an infant and toddler side) have different firmness levels on each side—with the toddler size being a bit softer. These mattresses are a great option for parents who don’t want to swap out models in just a couple years.
The longevity of a crib mattress is significantly shorter than other mattresses. Usually, you’ll find that manufacturers outline an age or weight limit. At a minimum, your crib mattress should be compatible from newborn through three years of age.
As mentioned, the flippable models will provide more durability and a longer shelf life.
Crib mattresses can vary widely in price. Consider your budget and the number of years you’ll get out of the mattress you choose.
The last thing you want is a crib mattress that’s too small for the crib, sits up too high even when the crib is set to the lowest position, or that’s on a recall list. So, be sure to measure the interior dimensions of your crib (especially the height).
Keep in mind that eventually, your baby will begin to pull themselves up on the sides of the crib. So, if the mattress is too tall, this creates a hazard where your child may be able to bend over the sides and fall out. Of course, always check the CPSC recall list to be sure that your intended mattress isn’t listed.
Look for features like machine-washable, waterproof, and/or stain-resistant covers, to make upkeep much easier and protect the core of your child’s mattress from getting soiled or damaged. Alternatively, if you pick a mattress that doesn’t have those built-in features, you can invest in a crib mattress cover.
Source by www.mindbodygreen.com