(Editor’s note: Please welcome Alan with a serious warning for any new parents. Thanks Alan!)
After waiting 9 months for baby to come do any parents want to chance an accident shortly after? Perish that thought! Leaving aside new parents, most other parents are well aware of the work that crib sheets perform 24/7 and 365. Along with the tiny little one constantly peeing, pooping and vomiting, crib sheets must endure a lot of wear and tear. Besides the hygiene issues, there are other safety concerns if the sheets become loose. This can be particularly dangerous for hyperactive babies who can grab them when they are rolling around and end up suffocating. It is always better to be safe than sorry and below are some safety issues to keep in mind.
1. Thoroughly examine baby sheets after every wash.
Washing changes the texture of many cloths and sheets are no different. For all sheets it is particularly imperative to check the state of the elastic. If it is stretched or broken then it is better not to use it. Where sheets have shrunk so they are too small it’s time to replace them.
2. When playtime is over check the state of the sheets
Babies love to play. Their bedding is often designed to encourage this. However, even the latest racing car or ladybug crib bedding needs a regular examination after playtime to ensure the sheets has not pulled up or been damaged.
3. The bed, sheets and mattress should all fit together
For a baby crib sheet set it is important that no spaces are created at the edges where the baby’s head or legs could get jammed. Fitted sheets with strong elastic fitted all around their perimeter are the best option to use. The crib sheet should be snug fit around each side of the mattress, with at least 2 inches of cloth underneath. A “top sheet” does not have elastic around it’s perimeter so it should never be put on the bottom under any circumstance.
4. Imagine you are your baby
Do the things that baby would do like pulling on his/her sheets. If the sheets on the crib bedding can easily come off then they are the wrong fit and should be replaced immediately.
5. Explore other options
- Safety sheets
Some baby sensible manufacturers like Priva have designed baby safe sheets can cannot come loose easily such as those in the Baby Luxe range. Other manufacturers include sheets that have Velcro or deep corner pouches to secure them in the crib.
Using sheets like work like a pillow case or use a fastener that seals off the mattress is also recommended. The drawback with these sheets is they take a lot of effort to remove because the whole mattress must be lifted up. A good modification to this style of sheet is the QuickZip sheet that is dual piece, where the soiled top piece can easily be unzipped and changed.
- Compact baby bedding
Keeping the baby compact and warm in a sleeping bag or baby sleeping suit is another option and has the added advantage of not being able to be kicked off during sleep.
Alan Riley publishes a web site devoted to making available the perfect bedding for all needs ranging from infants to adults, no matter what your budget. www.beautifulbeddingsets.com is worth a check by anyone looking for good bedding choices, including beddings sets from such top brands as JoJo design and Kimlor.
Photo provided courtesy of Anke L via Creative Commons license, some rights reserved.
Earnest Parenting: helping new parents keep their infants safe.