I know how confusing it gets to choose the perfect cot for your baby, especially if you’re a new parent! Before you get one, make sure to consider these factors:
1. Normal Cot or Cot Bed?
There are two main types of cots to choose from:
Cots are your baby’s bed from the moment they are born until they reach three years old. They come in various shapes and sizes, such as corner-shaped cots sitting in the corner of a room, oval-shaped cots to convert into junior beds or sofas, and so on.
There are also bedside cots that are beneficial for night-time feeding, having removable sides to place the cot next to your bed.
Baby cots are beneficial as they can last for up to three years, can be used for newborns, and it can fit twins for the first year. However, they aren’t as easy to transport compared to cot beds and newborns may feel lost in the large cot
Cot beds are longer and wider compared to the usual cots, meant for toddlers older than a year old. Its main advantage is that you can convert them to junior beds when your little one outgrows his cot. They don’t have drop sides and some versions don’t have adjustable mattress positions.
This is beneficial as it provides a spacious sleeping environment and can be converted to a bigger one when they grow older, saving you money.
But, if you plan to have another baby, you’ll need to buy another regular cot, which counteracts a cot bed’s cost-effectiveness. Furthermore, there are no drop sides, so it’s difficult to get your little one in and out.
You may also want to consider getting a travel cot, which is a bed, your little one can sleep in when the family is on vacation or visiting a friend.
You can find the traditional pop-up or tent-style cots, which are lightweight and robust. Or, there are now collapsible cots, which are sturdier but heavier and maybe hassling to bring from the slight bulkiness.
2. Cot’s Safety Standards
Safety should be your number one priority when selecting the perfect cot for your little one. With that in mind, look into these factors to ensure that the cot is safe to use for you and the baby:
- It should have the BSI number BSEN 716:2008, which ensures that the cot meets all the current safety standards. Reputable companies like Babyhood Cots Online will always have this tag!
- Most cot sides have vertical panels or bars. The space between the cot’s bars should measure less than 7mm, either between 1.2cm to 2.5cm or between 2.5cm to 6.5cm. These measurements are needed to prevent your child from trapping their arms and legs between the bars.
- There should be no parts jutting out from the cot’s structure. Any part of the chosen cot considered a protrusion needs to be less than 5mm.
- The sides of the cot rails should be high enough for your little one not to climb out from. It should also be safe and comfortable for you, having features I’ll explain below.
3. Extra Features to Consider
Besides what was mentioned above, there are other extra features you may want to consider getting with the cot. Some can save space, extend its lifespan, and/or even make the area safer for your little one.
Consider investing in the following:
- At least three adjustable mattress height positions. You can keep this higher when the baby is young so you have easier access to them. As they start getting older and mover around more, you can adjust and drop the mattress base down to prevent them from climbing.
- Cots with under-bed storage, like large pull-out drawers for the baby’s toys and supplies. This is useful if you have limited space or want to save room.
- Cot-top changers, which are changing units which slot on top of the cot, used with any changing mat. This is another space-saving feature that saves you money on changing tables.
- Teething rails, or plastic coverings which cover the rails to prevent any damage to the cot and your baby’s teeth.
- Drop-down sides for the sides to slide or fold down. These are beneficial for those who have bad backs, so it’s easier to lift your baby out of their cot without straining or bending down. But do be wary about your area allowing cots with this feature!
- There are cots with castors or wheels so it’s easier to move it from room to room. This will make mobility easier in case you’d like your little one to sleep in their own nursery or to move them into your bedroom during bad nights.
Just make sure that the castors or wheels that are mounted have brakes, or have the option for you to install locking brakes.
Good luck finding the perfect cot for your baby!