We partnered with CJ First Candle to bring you tips for how to make your nursery safe. Executive Director & CEO, Alison Jacobson shares some key safety considerations to keep in mind as you set-up your nursery.
One of the best things when you’re pregnant is designing the nursery and deciding on the theme. Expectant moms spend hours looking online and visiting baby stores to get ideas on how they want the nursery to look. Unfortunately, what they often overlook is the safety considerations when setting up the nursery. Usually, baby shower registries are filled with beautiful layettes, sweaters and blankets for the baby but rarely are there baby proofing items to go along with it.
Here are a few safety considerations to keep in mind when setting up your nursery and some “must-have” items to put on your registry:
A safe crib is top priority – In 2011, drop side cribs were banned in the United States due to entrapment and suffocation issues. In fact, it’s illegal to resell a crib with drop sides, even if it's at a yard sale or a garage sale. Be sure you purchase a new crib which is still the safest place for a baby to sleep but be sure that you are purchasing a new crib with stationary sides.
Ditch the comforters and bumpers – While it might look sparse, it’s vital that there be nothing in the crib except a firm mattress with a tight-fitting sheet. Keep stuffed animals, soft items and blankets out.
Change electrical outlets – To prevent toddlers from suffering an electrical shock, switch out old outlets with tamper resistant outlets that are designed with a spring-loaded shutter mechanism inside the outlet that helps block access to the slots unless a two-prong plug is inserted.
Consider the placement of furniture – Be sure that chairs, changing tables and other furniture are not placed underneath windows to prevent a child from climbing up and falling out of the window. Keep all window blind cords and monitor cords away from the crib as they could pose a strangulation hazard if your baby reaches for them. A great solution is a cordless monitoring system.
Secure all furniture to the wall – The rate of “topple over” accidents has increased by 46% over the past several years. All furniture, including changing tables and bookshelves, should be secured to the wall using either furniture straps or corner braces. Lamp cords should be fastened to the side of the table. The rate of unintentional injuries around the home can be dramatically reduced with a little planning.
Choose an organic crib mattress - Keeping your baby safe from chemical exposure isn’t always something you think about, but most baby products contain potentially hazardous chemicals or materials that aren’t very healthy for babies. And they spend up to 16+ hours per day in their crib! To cut down on off-gassing VOCs and potential endocrine disruption, look for a certified organic crib mattress and accessories made without harmful chemicals like vinyl/PVC, phthalates, and flame retardants.
About Alison Jacobson - Executive Director & CEO, CJ First Candle:
Alison Jacobson has been involved with CJ First Candle for over 17 years following the loss of her first son to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome in 1997. For six years she served on the Board of Directors and continued to play a role as spokesperson and consultant.
Ms. Jacobson assumed the role of Executive Director/ CEO in 2016 and has since guided the organization through a merger with CJ Foundation for SIDS to become the only national non-profit organization solely focused on eliminating Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SID), Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) and preventable Stillbirth through education and research while providing support to families who have suffered a loss.
Ms Jacobson’s experience as a national family safety expert provides her with a deep knowledge into the leading health and safety issues affecting families. She is a noted resource for media outlets on child safety issues including SIDS risk reduction measures. Her collaborative work with organizations including the National Institutes of Health, Consumer Products Safety Commission and American Academy of Pediatrics has helped her move forward the organization’s mission to get every baby to their first birthday.
Prior to her role in the child safety area, Alison was SVP at Weber Shandwick, one of the world’s largest PR firms, where she led business development initiatives for Fortune 500 companies and developed rebranding campaigns and launch programs for numerous consumer brands.
Alison is the mom of four children, stepmom to another two and caregiver for her husband with Multiple Sclerosis and son with intellectual disabilities. She also serves on the Board of STAR Inc., a not–for-profit organization serving individuals of all ages who have developmental disabilities.