When decorating a child’s room, every choice counts. This is not only furniture, a night lamp, the quality of building materials, but also such a detail as a mattress. It seems that special knowledge is not needed here – the sales assistant will tell you about all the nuances, but still it is better to find out about some points before buying it.
What is the difference between a children’s mattress and an adult
On the one hand, the children’s mattress is smaller and available in various standard sizes. On the other hand, it is primarily designed to provide ideal support for a sleeping baby.
It also has a number of other features, for example, it consists of several layers, the top one is usually covered with a moisture-proof material that extends the life of the mattress. A high-quality mattress helps to avoid such a problem as spinal deformity in childhood. Every step in production is thought out so that the physiological bend remains at the level acceptable during night and daytime sleep.
Harder surface than a standard adult reduces the chance of suffocation in infants. Here is a useful tip: make sure that the child’s head does not sink more than 3 cm into the mattress, otherwise, you should look for another, more solid model or replace it with a new one.
How firm should a baby mattress be?
It is generally accepted that the higher the rigidity, the better for a healthy holiday. However, experts warn that this solution cannot be universal for everyone, and in the case of children, it is recommended to choose medium hardness.
An ideal children’s mattress should consist of a soft bottom and top layer, and a harder middle layer, so that the weight is distributed over the surface as evenly as possible without creating a punching, which entails the risk of developing scoliosis.
The hardness of the mattress does not depend on the thickness, but on the type of material chosen and its density. For example, a latex mattress can be 8 or 12 centimeters high, enough to properly support a small child.
Mattress cover material
Separately, we note the material covering the mattress, different manufacturers have their own approach to choosing it, however, the coating is not of decisive importance, if it is not removed, it is advisable to purchase the cover separately in order to regularly wash it at 60 degrees in the future. Hot water will destroy dust mites and allergenic particles that enter the nursery.
Below is a small list to explain the benefits of each material that serves as the top protective layer for children’s mattresses.
- Amicor TM is an acrylic fiber with excellent antibacterial properties.
- Cotton Peach – A mixture of acrylic or nylon with cotton, breathable and durable material.
- Viscose is a natural material that absorbs moisture well.
- Velor is breathable, hypoallergenic and easy to clean.
- Wool – has a thermal balancing effect – warms in winter, and reduces body temperature in summer, a great advantage is high moisture absorption and antibacterial effect.
- Lyocell – has almost the same thermal properties as natural wool, cools similarly to linen, more absorbent than cotton, has absorbent properties.
- Polycotton is a breathable material often blended with synthetic fibers to dry quickly when wet.
- Bamboo fiber is a rapidly renewable, environmentally friendly raw material that naturally has antibacterial properties, ideal for children with allergies.
- Microfiber is a breathable material, thanks to its ability to absorb liquids, it creates a dry sleeping environment.
What is especially important for a children’s mattress pad? Anti-allergic properties and rapid absorption of moisture. Most manufacturers of children’s mattresses use materials with these qualities, but before buying, it is advisable to make sure that the baby does not have an individual intolerance. The safest choice would be a cotton cover with a small percentage of polyester.
Sometimes parents prefer completely water-repellent cases and are faced with their absence on the market, because the material must first of all be breathable, which cannot be said about the film coating. If it is more important to keep the mattress dry, there are other solutions for this, such as an oilcloth lining.
Fillers of children’s mattresses – which is better
Children’s mattresses are available with different fillers, but each manufacturer strives for the same goal – to reduce the likelihood of an allergic reaction, the appearance of mold inside the mattress and overheating in the case of newborn babies. Listed below are popular and not so well-known materials for children’s mattresses that you should pay attention to.
- Eco Foam – does not absorb moisture, does not deform, is environmentally friendly and does not cause allergies.
- Memory Foam is not the best choice for children’s mattresses and often has poor ventilation rates. In addition, memory foam retains body heat longer than other materials.
- Bamboo fiber – excellent indicators of ventilation and heat dissipation.
- Latex is antibacterial, does not collect dust, is safe for the environment, but in the case of natural latex, it may contain vegetable proteins and cause allergic reactions.
- Coconut fiber is a popular choice among parents due to its antibacterial properties, a natural material that does not block the passage of air.
- Buckwheat filler – adapts to the position of the body, resistant to deformation, prevents overheating, but is very susceptible to moisture, which can lead to mold.
- Mattress with aloe vera – the main filler is semi-rigid polyurethane foam, the top of which is coated with aloe vera juice to reduce the occurrence of allergic reactions.
- Foam mattress – guarantees the necessary ventilation during sleep, does not increase body temperature and does not cause allergies.
- Wool – maintains a constant body temperature, passes air well, reduces the likelihood of wetting the bottom layer of the mattress, since wool fibers absorb moisture by 1/3 of their thickness.
- Eucalyptus fiber is a derivative of the pulp of the eucalyptus tree. The resulting fiber is soft and ideal for making mattresses because it is hypoallergenic, absorbs moisture well and dries quickly.
The spring mattress is in the greatest demand, but the small weight of the child makes it difficult for the springs to work correctly, so their stiffness is higher than recommended for children under three years of age, so it is not recommended for children of the first year of life.
How to choose a mattress for a baby bed – basic rules
Summing up, let’s move on to the basics that you should pay attention to when buying a children’s mattress.
- Breathability and Moisture Exchange: To prevent heat build-up and CO² re-breathing during sleep, a breathable mattress is recommended. Most children’s mattresses contain channels (vertical or horizontal) to ensure good ventilation.
- Safety: when buying, pay attention to the correct size. The mattress must fit exactly in the crib so that there is no gap, if the gap between the edges of the mattress and the wall of the crib is more than 3 cm, this can lead to injury. The product should not contain wood chips or sharp metal parts, the material should be soft and smooth to the touch.
- Hygiene: A removable cover is required and can be washed at a temperature of at least 60°C.
- Allergy: if there is a high probability of its occurrence, you should pay attention to the appropriate mattresses. Foam rubber is considered an ideal material for allergy sufferers.
- Quality: Purchasing a mattress from a well-known manufacturer ensures that the product has passed all the necessary safety and quality tests. Do not buy used children’s mattresses and do not reuse after previous children, otherwise, it will lead to allergies and skin problems. In addition, mold is more likely to accumulate in used mattresses, caused by liquid ingress into the filler.
A good children’s mattress is important for health, as babies sleep between 9 and 13 hours a day, and newborns up to 16 hours. If you doubt the correctness of your own choice, consult a pediatrician or orthopedist for advice.