Ten years ago parents had very little choice when it came to furnishing the nursery; now there are so many attractive options that it can fluster a pregnant brain. Babyology comes to the rescue with our guide to choosing the best bed for you and your baby.
1. Start researching early
It always pays to start researching bed options as early as possible and be prepared that you may change your mind a few times. Consider shop delivery times, as the option you choose may not be available when you need it to be. Have a back-up option just in case.
2. Consider sleeping baby in a bassinet at first
You can delay the purchase of a cot if you decide you’d prefer to sleep baby in a bassinet for the first four to six months. Many parents choose this option so that baby feels cocooned in a more womb-like environment than a cot can provide. Going one step further than having a standard bassinet beside the parent’s bed to encourage closeness and easy access, is a bassinet with a drop-side like the Bednest co-sleeping bassinette. Allowing for co-sleeping, it also provides a safe and snug space that’s just for bub.
Having a bassinet is handy as some have wheels so that baby can travel from room to room with you, and if this is not your first baby, it will give you extra time to transition older children out of the needed cot to a bed. A bassinet which sways and rocks can also be soothing for a fussy baby.
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3. The size of the room
If your nursery is small, a cot needs to fit and still leave space for other furniture. Where space is limited, you may want to consider a change table that can be wall-mounted or one that sits on top of the cot.
We suggest sketching a brief room plan and taking measurements with you when shopping for the key furniture pieces so to you don’t waste time evaluating items which are never going to fit in the space you have. Make a shortlist at the store, then go home and measure the space again before ordering anything.
4. Fixed side or drop rail
Some people like drop rails on cots, some people need them and others don’t; drop rails are an individual consideration. If you do want a cot with drop rails, try to choose a design that allows for the one-handed operation. That way you can keep a secure hold of your sleeping baby while you drop the rail on his cot before lowering him into bed.
5. Converts to toddler bed
Would you like to transition your toddler to a smaller bed before continuing to a larger bed? Toddler beds are great because they’re lower to the ground than a conventional single bed and can provide a feeling of security to some children as they are still essentially sleeping in the same bed they had as a baby. Many cots come with conversion kits and others have kits you can buy once you need them.
6. Co-ordinating furniture
If you would like a seamless look to the nursery, investigate brands which make co-ordinating change tables, dressers and bookcases.
7. Factor in the cost of a mattress
Mattresses are almost always an add-on. Factor this cost into your budget and expect to pay from $100 to $200.
8. Look for adjustable mattress height
The cot should have at least two mattress height settings. You don’t want to be fishing a tiny newborn from the depths of the cot!
9. Teething rails
Babies turn into toddlers and many a designer crib has had its rails turned into mincemeat by a bout of teething. You can get transparent covers for this stage which will protect your investment.
10. Cots on wheels
Think about whether you want to have a cot with wheels or not. While castors do make it easier to move the cot around, they do also mean that the bed is generally less secure. Even when the wheels are firmly locked in position, older babies have been known to move their cot by standing on the mattress and shaking the sides of the cot – which can move them into a less safe position in their nursery.
This guide is for parents choosing a new cot. If you are choosing a second-hand cot, be sure that the cot meets Australian Standards and that it has not been subject to a product recall. Do your research about what this entails and be aware that cot hardware can wear out with age and being assembled and disassembled many times.
(This is a sponsored post for Danish by Design: Quality enhances the beauty of living)