For every four infants that are born, three will die an unexpected death due to their sleeping environment. This data by the American Academy of Pediatrics is worrying especially to a parent who’s unaware that simple crib bedding sets can cause their dear bundle of joy to take eternal rest. On the other hand, leaving out the sheets, bumpers, or pillows will mean your baby won’t sleep soundly, and so won’t you.
Parents shouldn’t thread the fine line between safety and comfort. The grim realities of unexpected infant death can be avoided entirely if you know what to do to prevent it from happening. By knowing what’s essential and improving it with trusted best practices, you’ll eliminate the threat of sudden death. Take these tips for a peaceful mind and a baby that’s safe asleep.
Essential Items That Make Nursery Bedding Sets
A crib is a safe haven for babies. But safety is independent of its four corners. In order for your baby to truly feel what it’s like to be at ease and secure, you must include several items of good quality in your baby’s crib bedding setup.
The first layer of protection is the crib’s mattress cover. It keeps your baby from any harmful allergens or bacteria lurking inside the mattress foam. On the flip side, this cover also protects the crib mattress from things that could stain, damage, or encourage odour and germ buildup.
Mattress covers surround the crib cushion and make sure every corner of the foam is covered and protected. Its secondary purpose is to make sure the mattress is kept clean so you won’t have to do the tedious work of washing it.
Sheets are the second layer of protection. If a mattress cover protects the foam, the sheets protect the covers.
This layer has both practical and aesthetic purposes. Sheets can be designed in plain colors that compliment the neutral nursery bedding sets it comes with. It can also be sold separately in vivid colors and playful prints. It’s made of soft fabric materials that are absorbent thus preventing any moisture from getting to the mattress cover while keeping your baby dry enough to enjoy a good night’s sleep, even without the introduction of a baby pillow.
Putting sheets on the mattress can be controversial. This item is often blamed as a primary culprit for unsafe bedding that’s causing sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) as they can be loose fabric that can obstruct an infant’s breathing. On the other hand, if you choose the right sheets you’ll not only provide safety but also comfort and ease for your baby. Look for ones that are made of light and absorbent fabric that fits your baby’s mattress perfectly.
Cribs have fixed railings that guard your baby against falling off the bed, but they can also be a cause for harm. Your baby’s head can hit the railings while you’re feeding them or cradling them in your arms beside the crib. Older infants that can stand may lose their balance and hit the rails.
Rail protectors are cushions that are installed on top of the rail guards. Their job is to soften the blow to a degree that it isn’t harmful, so you and your baby stay safe and sound when unforeseen head-hitting situations come up.
Best Practices for Nursery Bedding Sets
Over the years, practices surrounding the nursery and baby’s beddings have been tried and tested enough to cement themselves as wisdom. Experienced parents then pass these tidbits down to new ones. And we’re lucky to have come across some of them. If you’re yet to ask your own parents for advice, we hope you treat the following as such.
Choose crib bedding sets with neutral colors.
Mild colors are unsung heroes of a home. Painting your walls with colors like beige, ivory, or gray changes the energy to something soothing. Your eyes feel at rest when you gaze around the room.
The same effect can be said for your baby. These colors help transition your baby from seeing grays to recognizing neutral colors. So, stay consistent with your nursery theme. Get neutral bedding sets for your child’s mattress. When they grow older you can add a neutral crib comforter set that complements the existing one. The idea is to build on mild colors that look good together, and your child’s eyes will be as good a judge as yours.
Neutral colors also benefit you as a parent. Soft colors accentuate light in the room, enabling you to see the details of both the room and the crib and spot anything that needs attention.
Select light materials.
If your baby is below a year old, it’s wise to select bedding sets that are light. For now, do away with comforters and quilts and stick to the essentials.
That also goes the same with materials. For crib bedding sheets, choose linen and cotton as these materials absorb moisture. These also feel light and let the air circulate. Your baby will be interacting with sheets most of the time so it’s best to keep them comfortable.
Do a safety inspection and test your crib bedding sheets.
The comfort crib mattress sheets give is important, but not as important as safety. Before you decide to buy that cottony-soft sheet, inspect it. It is a must that the sheet layers have garters around it. You’ll have to measure the dimensions of the crib’s mattress as the sheet must fit snugly on its surface without any creases or loose fabric.
Finally, you must do a shrink test. Toss those sheets in the laundry and do so several times. If the fabric and the elastic keeps slipping out of the corners, it’s time to buy a new one, or have the seller exchange it for a better one.
Double your bedding sheets.
One technique that contributes to efficiency and hygiene is doubling, even tripling, your baby’s bedding sheets. The idea is putting multiple sheets on top of the other so when your little one pees, vomits, or accidentally knocks over the milk bottle or sippy cup, you can quickly change the covers—just lift the baby, pull the soiled sheet off, and underneath you get a fresh one.
If you’re worried this isn’t going to work because the liquid will penetrate through the sheet layers, there’s a fix for that—waterproof sheet layers. Put it underneath the absorbent ones.
It’s very efficient especially if you have to deal with liquid spill scenarios at night while you’re half asleep. Put this into practice and you’ll never have to lose sleep again.
Throw in waterproof mattress covers.
If you’re going to waterproof your sheets, it’s best to start with the mattress. It will not be the most comfortable for your baby, but it doesn’t have to reach the point where you exhaust all your sheet layers. On the other hand, getting waterproof mattress covers is a failsafe that makes sure no liquid enters the foam in case you get into a situation where your kid has to lie down on the mattress.
Nurturing the Nursery’s Most Important Furniture
The crib is your child’s refuge. It is a place where they should feel at ease, free from harm in the safety of the frame’s four corners. As parents, we must ensure that it stays that way. These bits of useful information, when put to practice, will do just that. It will create a nurturing environment for your infant right at the heart of the nursery where the most important human being in your home lies down to rest.