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Baby Products: How to Evaluate Them for Potential Safety

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Infant Safe Sleep
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The safest place for an infant to sleep is in a new crib, bassinet, portable crib, or play yard. A new play yard or portable crib is preferable to a used crib. Used or older cribs may not meet current safety standards and/or may have loose screws or missing hardware, which also make them unsafe. Use of outdated or damaged cribs, bassinets, and play yards can lead to entrapment, suffocation, or strangulation. Sleep areas other than a new crib, bassinet, portable crib, or play yard are not recommended; these include car seats (unless in transit), swings, sofas, chairs, and pillows. The crib mattress should be firm and not indent when the infant is sleeping on it. The only other item in the sleep environment should be a fitted sheet, which should fit snugly on the mattress and wrap around to the bottom of the mattress on all four sides. All other objects, including pillows, stuffed toys, quilts, comforters, and mattress toppers, should be removed. The safety of swaddling and swaddle sacks is not clear, and swaddling should be discontinued when the infant begins to show signs of trying to roll over (usually around 2–4 months). Baby monitors do not reduce the risk of SIDS. Parents should use caution in purchasing any infant sleep products which purport to reduce SIDS or to make an otherwise unsafe sleep practice (e.g., non-supine positioning) safe; at this time, there is no research to support any of those products’ claims of superior safety over using a crib, bassinet, portable crib, or play yard.

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Correspondence to Jeffrey D. Colvin .

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Colvin, J.D. (2020). Baby Products: How to Evaluate Them for Potential Safety. In: Moon, R. (eds) Infant Safe Sleep. Springer, Cham.

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