Join 3,552 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

Tags:

Crib mattress gap
July 3, 2012 8:44 AM   Subscribe

Is this too much of a gap between the head of crib and the crib mattress? Is it safe to fill in the gap with a rolled up blanket?

We got an Ikea crib for Yarly Jr., but can't seem to find a crib mattress that's quite long enough to fit snugly with the end of the crib. The CSPC says that you shouldn't be able to fit in more than two fingers between the mattress and crib. The first we ordered was clearly too short. Second one, we can fit two fingers between the mattress and the end of the crib, but three won't fit unless you really cram them. So this seems ok, but I'm still worried! What about rolling up a blanket firmly and closing up the gap?
posted by yarly to Home & Garden (13 answers total)
 
I worried a lot more about the gaps at the side than a gap at the bottom. I would fill the bottom with the blanket to make sure that the top stayed snug.

How old is Yarly Jr? Anecdote: In two years of crib use our kid never flipped ends of the crib (obviously your mileage may vary here) and when she finally did she was so big and using a pillow that three fingers would not have mattered.
posted by dpx.mfx at 9:09 AM on July 3, 2012


My nonexpert reaction is that you are worrying over nothing. However, if you want to measure, the 2 finger standard is also listed as 4 cm or 1.5 inches.

I'd avoid any blanket because it's unnecessary and could accidentally be moved by someone else into the baby's sleeping area. If it would make you feel better you could cut a piece of firm foam or wood and put it in that space.
posted by Mr.Know-it-some at 9:11 AM on July 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


If anything, I'd use something like 1x1 pine firmly screwed (with countersinks) into the bottom rail. Sand and stain as appropriate.
posted by dhartung at 9:16 AM on July 3, 2012 [3 favorites]


I would fill the bottom with the blanket to make sure that the top stayed snug.

Oh, that seems like a sensible solution, as long as everyone is instructed not to move the blanket into the crib. Yarly Jr. is currently residing in utero, resting up and gaining weight, before he makes his entrance into the world in a week or three. But he probably won't be able to wiggle down to the bottom of the crib for a while.
posted by yarly at 9:22 AM on July 3, 2012


Hopefully I'm not getting too far off-topic here, but you should put your baby in the 'feet to foot position' to sleep (feet against the bottom of the bed) so whether or not he can wriggle far should be a moot point.

I assume from your choice of language that you're in North America. Can you not get a mattress from Ikea that fits the cot perfectly? That's what we have (cot+mattress both from Ikea) and there's no gap.

Best of luck with the last few weeks!
posted by rubbish bin night at 9:39 AM on July 3, 2012


as long as everyone is instructed not to move the blanket into the crib

Roll that blanket up and bind it with some string, or some heavy rubber bands, or some masking tape. Make it into a gap-filling log, and you shouldn't have to worry about it being moved.
posted by chazlarson at 9:52 AM on July 3, 2012


A blanket is more of a danger than a borderline too-big gap. You absolutely should not have a blanket in there with him when he's that little. The sleep-deprivation renders any kind of "oh we'll just remember not to do [x]" plans completely moot.
posted by the young rope-rider at 9:58 AM on July 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


you should put your baby in the 'feet to foot position' to sleep (feet against the bottom of the bed) so whether or not he can wriggle far should be a moot point.

Sigh. We don't have the "feet to foot" advice here in the US -- I'm almost hesitant to look it up because there's already an impossible-seeming amount of baby safety advice out there!

I assume from your choice of language that you're in North America. Can you not get a mattress from Ikea that fits the cot perfectly? That's what we have (cot+mattress both from Ikea) and there's no gap.

According to all the measurements online, the Ikea mattresses and the ones I've ordered are should all be flush with the crib. I think they don't actually get manufactured with that much precision, though.
posted by yarly at 10:35 AM on July 3, 2012


the young rope-rider is absolutely right. You really want a mattress that's closer to the size of the crib. Adding a blanket just gives you something else to worry about. If you put the blanket in and secure it with rubber bands or string, then you have to worry about the baby getting string or rubber bands into his/her mouth on top of that.

Anecdotal newborn story to counter-balance some of the others: We used to put our oldest down to sleep in the middle of the crib (never heard the feet-to-foot rule before, but this was a long time ago). He had to wear a special brace due to hip dysplasia, preferred to be swaddled snugly, and he was underweight and tiny at birth. Still, somehow he managed to position himself at the very end of the crib 99% of the time, with the top of his head nestled against the crib rails at the corner.

No clue how he did it. We figured that since he was breech and his head was pretty much up against my ribs when I was pregnant, that position just felt comfortably familiar to him. It never hurt him, but the mattress was made to fit the crib. Naturally, YMMV.
posted by misha at 10:37 AM on July 3, 2012


I agree with adding the 2x4 if you can't find a TIGHT mattress.....you'll be shocked at the ways these little ones can wiggle around. No extra blankets, no crib bumpers, no stuffed animals. Buy a quality piece of wood, no splinters, countersink it tightly and make sure the mattress is very snug. If the ikea mattress isn't a good fit, are you sure that you assembled the crib correctly? It seems like it should be.....I'm 4 years out of the crib business....just an observation.... And Congrats!!!
posted by pearlybob at 10:43 AM on July 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


Apparently "feet to foot" is just for when you're using blankets -- you put the baby at the bottom of the bed and the blanket tightly up around to his chest so there's no wiggle room.
posted by yarly at 10:46 AM on July 3, 2012


Agreeing with dhartung, young rope rider, pearly bob. The CPSC web site has additional brochures and press releases about safe sleep-- no pillows, no stuffed animals, no padded crib bumpers, no blankets. The CPSC's advice is based on decades of emergency room & mortality statistics.

Babies have tiny little breathing passages, and their sinuses are usually congested, which further constricts the movement of air. Plus they are unable to move themselves away from a hazard.

As a medical examiner from Hampton Virginia said, they don't cry, they just die.

We loved the "sleep sack," which is like a sleeping bag with arms, and we had nothing else in the crib, just stark emptiness.
posted by ohshenandoah at 1:22 PM on July 3, 2012


Seconding sleep-sacks over blankets, especially once they outgrow swaddling. This australian swaddle was our baby's favourite until she outgrew it, from just over 2kg to about 5kg.

If your mattress is from IKEA and it doesn't fit, return it. Bring a measuring tape and double-check the replacement. Otherwise, you can get a foam mattress usually cut to measure at a furniture/upholstery-type shop.

You don't want anything that's fluffy and soft. I use either a very light muslin or a wool knit blanket that the baby could breathe through if it covered her face.

Once, I left her on top of our made bed which has a duvet. I stepped into the bathroom for thirty seconds and came back to find she'd rolled face-down into the duvet and was struggling to lift her head to breathe because of the awkward position she was in.

It's not so scary now she's stronger and more mobile, but for the first six months, a clear bed counts. When she sleeps with us, we push everything aside so she sleeps away from blankets, pillows etc, in just a sleep-sack.
posted by viggorlijah at 11:36 PM on July 3, 2012


« Older How do I navigate trying to re...   |  Is there a collection, in prin... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.