Your baby will spend a lot of their time sleeping and will make great use of their cot, for the first few months at least!


However, considering it is something that your little one will use on a daily basis, it is important you ensure your infant is safe and happy.


1. Choosing a cot

Before you buy your cot or even start to look at one in more detail, make sure it conforms to all safety standards. Once you have confirmed it is up to standard, you will then need to consider the following:

  • The bars should be no more than 6.5cm apart.
  • The distance between the mattress and the top of the cot should be no less than 50cm.
  • They bars should also be vertical – your baby can fall out or climb up horizontal slabs.
  • All cut-outs in foot or headboards shouldn’t be near your little one’s head, arms or legs.
  • Choose one with bars on all sides to allow good air flow, although ones with closed tops and bottoms are fine. 



2. The mattress

  • All mattresses must meet basic EU legal requirements so look out for the CE mark. 
  • While it is recommended that you buy a mattress new, you can use a second-hand one as long as it is clean, not sagging, free of rips and bumps and is relatively new.  You will also need to make sure the mattress fits into the cot correctly and there are no  gaps or no bumps when it is lying on the base.
  • Go for one that is firm rather than soft, and at least 10cm in width – this is to ensure your baby has adequate support.
  • If you can, buy a mattress with a removable top cover or invest in a cover to keep it clean and hygienic.


3. Things to avoid

While they might seem like a good idea, do clear your baby’s cot of bumpers, pillows and toys. Also, steer clear of cots with drop down sides and ones that have been repainted or are very old.


4. Check it regularly

Do make sure to check the cot regularly, and keep an eye out for splintered woos and peeling paint.