Hot on HuffPost Parents:
Baby Baskets: Safe for Your Newborn?
Filed under: Babies
A Moses basket, such as this style by Tiddliwinks, can keep baby close while letting Mom be hands-free. Credit: Amazon.com
A baby basket can be an attractive and convenient choice for parents seeking an alternative to cumbersome cribs.
The portability of baby baskets allows parents to keep their babies close while doing chores around the house and also gives wee ones a place to rest between frequent feedings. The cozy resting quarters can sometimes simulate the protection of the womb, and can provide newborns with a greater sense of security versus the openness that can surround them while lying in a crib.
Often referred to as Moses baskets, baby baskets come in a variety of styles and with decorative options such as skirting and bumpers. Most baby baskets are constructed of wicker, are lightweight and are designed to provide a cozy sanctuary for your little one to sleep, play and view the world during his or her first four to five months.
But while a baby basket can provide your infant with a safe environment, there are important issues to take note of when deciding which baby basket to use and how to use it. Here are some tips:
- Select a baby basket with a sturdy bottom and wide base. This will help prevent the basket from tipping due to your baby's movements or inadvertent bumps. Place your baby basket only on smooth, flat surfaces to maximize the sturdiness.
- Be wary of other children playing around the baby basket. While some baskets come with -- or can be fitted with -- hoods, the openness of the basket doesn't provide protection from airborne toys and stumbling toddlers. Pets are also naturally nosy and will have easy access to the basket -- they may even view it as a comfortable bed designed just for them.
- Use a baby basket specifically designed for use with infants. Decorative baskets come in all forms, but most are not designed with child safety in mind. Ensure that your baby basket has a smooth surface free of exposed staples or frayed pieces of wicker. Baby baskets designed specifically for use with infants will be sturdier in construction and able to carry up to 15 pounds.
- Select a basket with a firm mattress. The mattress should fit snugly inside the baby basket and sit low enough to provide ample space between the mattress and rim of the basket. Make sure the mattress is snug to the sides of the basket, as well.
- Be cautious of heat sources and open flames. Most baby baskets are constructed of natural materials and are susceptible to combustion from nearby sources such as space heaters and candles. Keep your basket dry to avoid mold or mildew concerns.
- Inspect the handles and bottom of the basket regularly. Ensure that these areas of the baby basket remain sturdy and in good condition to help void accidents while moving the basket between locations.
Ask Us Anything About Parenting
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.