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Video:Choosing a Crib for your Baby

with Kathy Moore

With so many options, shopping for the perfect baby crib can be overwhelming. Find out what to look for so that you can find the right crib for you and your baby.See Transcript

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Transcript:Choosing a Crib for your Baby

Hi, I am Kathy Moore for About.com Parenting. Of all nursery products, cribs are responsible for the most infant deaths. Whether you choose a new crib or a hand-me-down, this program offers advice and information on choosing a crib.

Test Cribs for Shakiness

When you are shopping for cribs, give each one a shake test. This will give you an immediate sense of a crib's sturdiness. Most cribs are made from wood, but they may also be constructed of other materials like metal or plastic. Different wood types really only change the price, not the quality, of the crib.

Measure Crib Slats

For a crib to protect an infant from falling out or trapping their head, the distance between the slats must be no more than 2 3/8 inches apart. The crib's corner posts should be the same height as the sides of the crib or just slightly higher.

Test the Rails

Nearly all cribs have one side that lowers. Be sure to test out the drop side and make sure it raises and lowers smoothly and quietly. The side rail that lowers should also have at least two locking devices to prevent curious babies from releasing them.

Look for Locking Wheels

Some cribs come with rolling casters to help you move the crib when the sheets need to be changed. If your crib has wheels, make sure they can lock.

Consider Teething Rails

A teething rail is another option. This is a thin piece of molded plastic that covers the top of the railing and keeps your toddler from chewing on the wood railing.

Test Mattress Fit and Firmness

Make sure the crib mattress provides firm support. The mattress should also fit snugly in the crib, to keep the baby from slipping between the mattress and the side rails.

Know Crib Safety Standards

Most new cribs meet the latest safety standards. If you are considering a used crib, check for any safety recall information on the web at CPSC.gov before you use an older crib.

Though grandma's antique crib may look nice and be a family heirloom, older cribs may have a finish that contains lead or presents other hazards. Buying new ensures that you are providing a safe and secure environment for your baby to sleep.

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