Is it safe to have toys in your baby’s crib?

When you return home from the maternity hospital with your new baby, it’s natural to feel anxious about making sure your newborn’s environment is as safe as possible. One area that can house more safety risks than you might imagine is your baby’s crib. When it comes to cribs, bare is best. Buying toys for babies brings parents joy, but do they belong in the crib? Here is what you need to know to protect your baby.

What does bare is best mean?
Anything you put into your baby’s crib could turn into a hazard. That means keeping pillows, heavy blankets, sleep positioners, and toys out of the crib.

Adding unnecessary items to a crib increases the risk of suffocation and choking, especially in newborns. About half of the deaths that occur in cribs each year are suffocation events caused by having additional items in the crib.

Is there any safe way to use toys in my baby’s crib?
Ideally, there shouldn’t be any toys in the crib. If you want to include some, here are some safety guidelines:

  • Choose small toys that can be attached to one side of the crib.
  • Don’t use toys with parts that might detach or that babies can use to pull themselves up.
  • Ensure that toys don’t have any cords that babies could become tangled in.

Alternatively, simply wait until your baby is at least 18 months before putting any toys in his or her sleeping space. If your baby ever sleeps in a playpen, the same rules apply. Remove the toys from the space when your baby sleeps, and never leave him or her unattended with toys in the playpen.

At West Hills Hospital & Medical Center, your baby’s safety is as important to us as it is to you. The nurses at our maternity hospital offer extensive post-partum education to help you make the right decisions for your baby’s safety, and should your newborn need medical care, we are home to a world-class NICU . To find out more about our maternity services, please call (818) 676-4321.

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