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What to Look for When Buying Baby Cot Sets

The last thing you need when comforting a crying baby is to be bending awkwardly over a cot that is too low or too high. And of course, you want your child to be safe as can be in the cot, whether they’re sleeping or awake.

Before you make a purchase, think about how long you plan to use it. Plans for a second child? Do you want to buy a convertible cot that changes into a small bed, or will baby go straight to a grown-up bed after the cot?

When looking at baby cot sets, there are some basic features you should keep an eye out for.

Hazards

Sharp edges or anything sticking out or pointing up that could snag clothing. All components of the cot should be permanently fixed or require a tool to take apart. There shouldn’t be any footholds in the cot that could used as a ledge climb.

Ease of use

Small niggles can be magnified into a major headache for a sleep-deprived parent. The dropside (the side of the cot that moves up and down) should be secure and smooth to operate and not too heavy for you. It should be low enough for you to bend comfortably over into the cot.

It should be impossible for a child to open, but easy for an adult to operate. Make sure the side is at least 5cm off the floor when lowered or feet will bang against the side or be crushed when it comes down.

Teething strips

These are plastic strips on the wooden edges of the cot, such as the top of the dropside, so that neither the baby nor the cot is damaged if it’s chewed on.

Castors

Wheels make the cot easier to move around, but there should be lockable brakes on at least two wheels.

Is the cot deep enough to stop a child from falling out?

The distance from the top of the mattress to the top of the lowest side when the dropside is closed should be at least 50cm when the base is set in the lowest position. The depth should be 30cm when it’s in the upper position. The depth should also be at least 15cm when the dropside is down.

Does the mattress fit snugly around all sides?

When you choose a mattress, make sure there is no more than a 4cm gap between the edge of the mattress and the adjacent cot side when the mattress is pushed to the opposite side. Gaps at the sides are a suffocation risk – your baby could roll face-first into them.

Are there any entrapment hazards? 

Any large space or opening must be between 5cm and 9.5cm to stop your baby from either getting caught or falling out. Smaller openings should not be between 3cm and 5cm wide. Any space or opening should not be between 5mm and 12mm wide, so little fingers don’t get caught.

We hope this guide helps you when looking at baby cot sets.