I was recently reading some blogs online and saw a question about using old crib mattresses instead of getting a new one for an upcoming baby. The mattress they were considering using was actually 20 years old (although I don’t know how much it had been used during that time.)
I would suggest that using a 20-year-old mattress might not be the best idea. Perhaps if it had been stored in a dust-free environment – preserved, really – it would be okay. As long as it was scrupulously clean and dry when it was put in storage.
But what worries me is the materials used to make mattresses 20 years ago. I don’t know what precise laws regarding chemicals or heavy metals have changed during that time, but it’s not out of the question that some of the materials used to make crib mattresses 20 years ago are now recognized as toxic.
In any case, with a new baby you really just can’t be too careful when it comes to health and safety. What happens to them when they’re an infant and in their formative years will influence them for their entire lives. A healthy environment, with a brand new organic cotton crib mattress that is certified as safe is a good start.