Are Baby Blankets Dangerous?
Baby blankets – beautiful, soft, cuddly, warm and comforting. Yes all of these – but also possibly deadly. This may sound alarming, but its true. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), studies have shown that up to one-third of the babies who die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) each year might actually have suffocated after being placed on soft bedding. Other information indicates that babies are at increased risk for SIDS if their heads get covered by soft bedding while they sleep; babies have been found dead with their heads covered by the bedding, even while they were sleeping on their backs.
I’m sorry if this sounds really frightening. But don’t worry! – new parents are constantly fed a diet of very alarming statistics on child-rearing, that can make them begin to get really paranoid, but in fact its usually not as bad as it sounds – actually much of it is common sense. In this case, baby blankets and baby bedding are really perfectly safe if you just follow a few sensible recommendations, as laid down in 1999 by the American Academy of Paediatrics (AAP) and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD).
1. For babies less than one year old, make sure they sleep on their backs in a crib with a firm, tight-fitting mattress. Get rid of all soft bedding such as quilts, pillows, and assorted stuffed toys and soft products. It always looks lovely to have a crib full of soft toys and cushions, but it is potentially deadly.
2. Use baby clothes designed for sleeping in instead of a blanket.
3. If you do use a blanket, select a thin one. Place your baby so the feet can reach the foot of the crib and then tuck in the blanket or sheet around the crib mattress only as far up as your baby’s chest. Ensure the head remains uncovered while sleeping.
Major retailers and the CPSC have been working together for several years to promote these safe practices, so all you have to do is follow the guidelines and you – and your baby – should be fine. As babies get older it’s perfectly fine to start using heavier baby blankets and lots of other lovely baby bedding, so don’t be afraid!
But what is the best type of baby bedding? Well it’s the one that guarantees maximum baby bedding safety, warmth and coziness to your baby. The best fabric to use is 100 percent cotton, or some other type of natural fibre, but any fabric which is a soft material and – most essential – non-toxic. There are many types of bedding top choose from nowadays that are soft, smooth, and pleasant smelling with attractive and eye pleasing colors.
Remember, baby blankets come in many types, including quilts, duvets, and comforters. They also have different thicknesses construction and fill material. There are lots of choices available, but whatever choice you make, the first choice is safety.
Make a Baby Quilt – Part 1 – Fabric Selection & Assembly