Hey there, fellow parents. So, we all know a crib mattress is supposed to be firm, but when I had my first one, the crib mattress I got felt harder than a rock to me, and I felt like it was affecting her sleep.
And let me tell you, we didn’t have a 100-night free trial or generous offers like these back in the day, so whatever you bought was what you stuck with for a long time.
Here’s another kicker, although I never got her to co-sleep with me on our bed, during the occasional daytime naps, I found she was just more comfortable on our mattress than her crib mattress at nighttime. So, it was clear that something had to change. And obviously, I thought it had to start with her mattress.
Now, after facing all of these challenges head-on, I have some invaluable tips to share with you from a mother’s perspective and help you find the answer to the question of how to make your crib mattress more comfortable.
- Choosing the right crib mattress is very crucial for your baby’s all-round development.
- Go for a balance of firmness and comfort. Use quality materials to avoid allergies and exposure to chemicals.
- Ensure the sleeping environment is comfy, considering room temperature and humidity.
- Opt for breathable linens and pads, and consider a humidifier for better sleep.
- Regular cleaning of the crib and mattress is essential to protect your baby from dust and contaminants.
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Why Choose Crib Mattress Comfort?
A comfortable and nice crib mattress is not just a matter of home décor but is also crucial for providing your little one with sound sleep like never before.
My pediatric doctor told me that a baby’s sleep has a direct impact on the growth (both physical and mental) and therefore ensuring proper sleep for my little ones should be my main priority. And boy, she was right! On nights when my little girl slept nicely without squirming in her crib, she woke up really well. She was happier, more cheerful, and overall more fun.
But as I mentioned earlier, her crib mattress felt like a hard rock which made me often ponder this thought “How on earth is my little girl comfortable on this granite piece”? But luckily after doing some more digging, and researching more about it, I discovered I was just worrying for no reason.
I found out that infant mattresses are regulated by high standards in both the USA and Canada, and you can pretty much pick anything as firmness is one of the standards as well.
So, the mattress I had was good enough for her, and to save you from all this unnecessary stress, below are some of my tested tips and strategies to ensure crib mattress comfort for your little one.
Choosing the Right Crib Mattress
Alright, parents or parents-to-be, let’s talk about choosing your baby’s crib mattress.
It shouldn’t be a dreadful task as we might make it look like. Here’s the deal: when it comes to crib mattresses, you want to pick something that strikes the balance or sweet spot between firmness and support. You don’t want it to be super-firm (squishy) but at the same time, also don’t want it to feel like a rock.
And if it’s your first child as well, naturally, just like me, you might feel inclined towards softer surfaces and feel them to be the right fit!
But let me warn you, that my pediatrician and all professionals I’ve talked with thus far recommend using only hard and firm mattresses for your baby’s ideal growth. You want to provide them with a flat surface that’s ideal for your little munchkin’s weak.
And, there is no way you should opt for a soft mattress in pursuit of additional comfort.
Talking about the materials. I like to stick with breathable mattresses. Remember, quality is the key here.
Look for hypoallergic foams, and stay away from latex, polyurethane foam, springs, and vinyl covers – as they are just not worth the risk at all. Another thing, if you’re into planet sustainability as well as don’t want your little one to inhale any harmful fumes, you can always check if a mattress meets the Green Guard Certifications standard which assures the use of materials free from chemicals.
Also, don’t ever forget – all babies are different – and they all have different needs. What worked on my first one, sometimes didn’t work on my other ones. So it’s more about trial and error, and also looking at baby’s preferences and adjustments to new introductions.
Other than the mattress itself, don’t sideline some other tactics that you can use to make your baby’s crib mattress more comfortable i.e. by using blankets, toppers, and fitted sheets.
How to Make a Crib Mattress More Comfortable: Tips and Strategies
Having raised 6 kids, let me tell you one thing straight-forward i.e. not to fall into every marketing tactic or gimmicks being employed by the companies nowadays.
While breathable, sustainable, and all these fancy words sound good at their face value, I can assure you from my experience, that it’s not the first or the only thing you need to address to ensure snug and comfortable sleep for your kiddo! My pediatricians have never blamed a crib mattress for an uncomfortable sleep.
It’s always us (the mothers) who tend to over-pamper the baby’s care. Therefore, instead of constantly changing or seeking better mattresses, you should also focus on your home environment first.
My recommendations would be to start with:
Quality Bedding and Linens
Breathable crib sheets: Always opt for sheets made from materials like cotton, organic cotton muslin, or Wovenaire, as they are waterproof and allow the baby to breathe comfortably. These materials are also easy to wash, ensuring a healthy environment. Avoid products made of latex, polyethylene, or vinyl, as they may pose a risk of suffocation.
Fitted sheets: When choosing linens, fitted sheets should be your only choice. Unsecured or loose sheets can be a super-costly mistake as they can lead to unfortunate situations like unexpected SUID (Sudden Unexpected Infant Death). The mere thought of this breaks my heart and is every parent’s worst nightmare without a doubt, so dear mothers, please take care and ensure this especially because parenting can be overwhelming sometimes.
Also, don’t forget to add mattress pads or mattress protectors to your shopping list to keep those liquids away from the mattress.
Avoid blankets and swaddles: I also strongly recommended to avoid using weighted bedding materials such as blankets, mattress toppers, and swaddles. Instead, use wearable blankets to keep the baby warm and protected from allergies and suffocation.
My mother has always said one thing: the little one is not capable of moving or getting rid of any obstructions to their breathing in case of any unfortunate event, so ensure, as a mother, that you are taking all vital steps to prevent it firsthand.
Adjust Room Temperature and Humidity
Enough about the bedding; let’s talk about temperature and humidity. This is something that is often overlooked by a lot of parents, in my opinion and is probably one of the most important components when it comes to ensuring your baby’s comfort.
Did you know that babies can feel irritated due to improper room temperature, which can disrupt their sleeping comfort?
Keeping the temperature between 68°F-72°F (around 20-22°C) yields the best results.
I’ve truly tried and tested this when my 3-month-old baby was wrapped in a wearable blanket during a moderately warm spring season. A slight change in weather made her feel a little too warm. I decided to test both low and high room temperatures. The observations revealed a quick change in her mood: a crying baby turned into a sleeping baby once again!
Based on my experiences raising 6 kids, I feel babies are even more sensitive to any changes to the room temperatures and this can disrupt their entire sleep game.
And during the winter months, don’t forget about humidifiers, especially in places where the air gets particularly dry. Dry air can lead to irritated sinuses and respiratory issues, not only for your little one but for the entire family. Call me crazy, if you want but let’s not forget the added bonus – I enjoy the mist from humidifiers floating in the air.
Creating a Comfortable Sleep Environment
Let me ask you what a comfortable sleep environment would mean for you.
Well, if you had asked me this when I had my kiddos, I would have answered with quiet, and an entire king-size bed to me without any nighttime disruptions. I know it might sound like a tall order, but hey, maybe in some parallel universe, right? Who knows!
However, for your little ones, it’s something else, if you haven’t figured it out yet! Babies do need the touch and smell of their mother. What works best for this is sharing a room with the baby (not the same bed for all safety reasons).
There’s nothing more comfy for a baby than having their mother’s presence nearby.
I noticed significant improvements in my first infant girl’s sleep when I placed her crib in my room. Remember that sharing a room is beneficial, but never indulge in co-sleeping with your infant. At least not until they are around 12-16 months or so.
Another tip, although the advice below goes against the guidelines for using soft blankets or swaddles, here’s a tip if you want to use them occasionally: Never leave the baby alone when using such soft bedding. Your supervision is important to provide temporary support until the baby settles into a peaceful sleep.
Regular Cleaning and Maintenance
Creating a hygienic environment comes first when looking out for your baby’s comfort. Ensure that the bedding and linens are cleaned regularly. Dust particles can cause skin rashes, burning, and irritation, which parents often overlook as a possible reason for their baby’s discomfort.
Since we can’t see dust or unhygienic elements, they can still bother our infants during sleep. Therefore, make it a habit to clean your mattresses, beddings, or sheets that come into contact with your baby.
Additionally, make sure to rotate the mattress to increase its longevity. Also, if you have two sides i.e. infant side and toddler side on your mattress, make sure you’re using the right one for your baby.
When cleaning, use gentle soaps or liquids that do not leave behind a harsh smell. It’s advisable to use mild cleansers specifically designed for babies.
Here’s a tip: As a mother, ensure that you are wearing clean clothes, as dust particles can easily transfer to your baby’s clothes during playtime. Implement this tip and observe how your baby’s regular nights can become more peaceful.
After everything that I’ve discussed, I hope you now understand how important it is to be the responsible parent who makes informed decisions and creates a soothing place where our babies can peacefully rest.
You must consider the firmness, the quality of the materials, and the safety certification standards. Remember, this is not about finding the softest choice, but providing the support and stability our baby needs for healthy development.
Beyond the mattress itself, attention to bedding, room temperature, and cleanliness further enhances your baby’s comfort. Opt for breathable linens, maintain optimal room conditions, and regularly clean and maintain your baby’s sleep environment to ensure a hygienic and soothing atmosphere.