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How to Choose the Right Mattress for Your Child?

One of the highlights of our room is our bed. It should be the most comfortable place for you to rest on. Most especially if you had a long day. We take time to choose the right kind of mattress so that we will be able to make use of its maximum comfort. Taking a look at its size and its feature is what we always do.

There are different kinds of mattresses in the market for us to choose from. They have different materials and features for us to compare with. This is to make sure that we will be able to get what kind of mattress that is perfect for us. Even for our children.

Our children have one of the most delicate skins. They need to have a clean and hypoallergenic piece of clothing and as well as their hygiene. And when it comes to their bed, there are different kinds of mattresses for you to choose from. There are different things that you need to consider before buying a mattress for them. Also the transition from their baby crib to a child’s bed. It may be new to them but it is going to be a fun start and an exciting experience for them.

 Simple guide to pick mattress for your child

  • Size

Always remember that kids grow up so fast. Choose a mattress that will support them even up until they are 10 years old. Also, the room size of your child matters. Find a mattress that will not consume that much space in their room.

  • Thickness

For every kind of mattress, there is a certain measurement for its thickness. Its support will depend on the thickness and the material of the mattress. But when it comes to choosing the right kind of mattress for your child, choose the one that is not too high.

  • Material

Every mattress has its own material. It is up to you to choose which kind of material you want as a mattress. The comfort will always depend on the material used and as well as the thickness of the mattress. It will also affect how sensitive your child is.

  • Your child’s sensitivity

There are certain types of material where your child is sensitive to. Research or ask the salesperson about the mattress and what it is made of. This is to make sure that your child will not have any skin problems in the future. There are cheap mattresses that cause rashes because of dust and bed bugs and other tiny insects that can live in the mattress.

  • Mattress support/foundation

The supporter or the foundation of the mattress for our child will also matter. It is to keep the condition of the mattress last longer. And there are different kinds of mattress supporters and foundations for you to choose from. There are certain heights and sizes for you to select so that it will match the mattress that you chose.

One thing that you need to remember is that the supporter or foundation needs to be very durable. It should be able to carry heavyweight to make the frame last long. And for the mattress not to sag or ruin its quality.

  • Comfort

The only thing that we need to consider in order for our children to have a good sleep is their Comfortability when they sleep. A good night sleep of our child will make them feel happy the next day. Otherwise, they might be throwing tantrums and it will be difficult for us to handle.  Every mattress has a level of comfortability, depending on the thickness and the material used.

*Tip: If you are about to buy a mattress for your child, bring them with you and let them help you choose the kind of mattress they want to have*

  • Spend for quality

We know that mattresses may cost you a lot of money. But it will all be worth it once you place it in the bedroom. Most especially if the mattress is very comfortable for you or your child to sleep on. Instead of having a hand-me-down mattress, go for a brand new one. Because it might cost your child’s health if you use the second-hand mattress.

How to keep your child’s mattress durable and comfortable and last longer:

  • Use a durable foundation

The quality of our mattress will depend on the material, foundation, and how well we take care of it. There are certain foundations that ruin the quality of the mattress earlier than expected. It is usually because of the hallow areas of the supporter where it makes the surface of the mattress uneven.

Choose a mattress foundation where it can support the mattress and have an even surface area. So that it will be comfortable for your child to lie on and for it to last longer.

  • Use a water-proof mattress topper

Mattress toppers are used to protect the surface of your mattress. To avoid stain and to keep it soft and comfortable without losing its even surface. Kids ages 3 to 8 are known to pee on their bed whenever they fall asleep. And we already know that any forms of liquid can ruin the quality of the mattress.

There are certain materials that are sensitive to liquid. Which is why a water-proof mattress topper is best used for the mattresses our kids. Mattress toppers are easier to clean than the mattress itself.

  • Replace bedding’s with clean ones every 1-2 weeks

It is already a mandatory thing that we need to change our bedding’s. This is also to maintain the durability of the mattress. And according to amerisleep.com, oil from our skin, stains from the food that we eat, and even our sweat are absorbed by the bedding. Our bedding’s are like sponges, it absorbs anything that is spilled on it. And once it is full, the mattress will absorb whatever the bedding’s can’t absorb. And this is why we need to change our bedding’s to cleaner and new ones.

  • Flip the mattress from time to time

Flipping the mattress can help prolong its lifespan. The surface of a mattress can be deformed because of the weight of your child. Most especially if they have a favorite sleeping position. In order to keep the surface even, flip, rotate and turn the mattress every now and then so that it won’t sag. Although there are ways in order for you to fix a sagging mattress, it is still best to have its original surface.

  • Keep the mattress clean

Keeping the mattress clean is for you to use the right kinds of bedding’s and mattress topper. It will save you more time and effort from cleaning them. Also to keep the bed bugs and dust from irritating your kid, have it vacuumed from time to time. It will keep the puffiness of the mattress. And as well as keep those unwanted visitors away from harming your kid.

  • Avoid pets on the mattress

Pets are known to be very passionate. But they should have their own separate bed. Most especially if they are close to your kids. Pets also salivate and they pee everywhere (if they are not trained). And this can ruin the mattress even if you have the best mattress topper and bedding’s. They also carry lice that can live inside the mattress. This is why there are beds that are for sale so that your pet can also have their place to sleep on.

  • No jumping

Number one rule in the bedroom is not to jump on the bed. Aside from the possible accidents, it can also ruin the surface area of the mattress. It will make it uneven and make it comfortable for your kid to get a good night sleep.

  • Give it a little bit of sunshine once in a while

Just like us humans, our mattresses need a little bit of a sun. It is to kill the remaining bacteria and as well as keeping it well-cushioned.

Transition from Crib to a Bed

Now that you already know how to buy the right mattress for your child, the next challenge is how to introduce them to their new bed. The transitioning from the crib or them sleeping between you and your spouse can be difficult.

Make sure the bed is ready and safe for your child to sleep on

There are a lot of reasons why you need your little one to have their own bed. Its either you have another baby coming or they are already growing up. Choosing the right kind of mattress and bed frame is a huge investment to ensure your kid’s safety. And their safety is our number one concern.

Keep the bed low and close to the ground

In order for them to be safe in their own room or on their new bed, keep their bed low. This is to avoid any fall or accident in the future. Because there are some kids who tend to move a lot whenever they sleep. And you don’t want them to accidentally fall on the floor while they are asleep. Also, it will be easier for them to climb their new bed if is low.

Add extra cushion around it

Add extra pillows or stuffed toys around the bed. This is for them to be comfortable whenever they are in their new sleeping area. Also, it is to keep safe if ever they fall. At least there is something soft that can catch them and can avoid any bumps.

Make it exciting

Treat the transition as if is a magical event so that they will be excited. Praise them during their first night and tell them how brave they are to sleep on their new bed. Before moving to a new bed, tell them beforehand so that they will have an idea about what will happen. Tell them at least a month or two before so that they will not be in shock during the day.

And in the room, add the little things that they like. Their favorite cartoon character, favorite color, and everything that they like. This is for them to be motivated and excited to stay and sleep in their own bed or bedroom.

Child-proofing the room

Another thing you need to do is to make sure that the room and the surroundings of their new sleeping area are safe. And according to raisingchildren.net.au is to keep the outlets covered, the curtains must have an appropriate height, and as well as keep the harmful objects away. It is also a standard thing to do as a parent.

Keep the corners sealed with something soft to avoid any bumps on their head. There are baby-proofing items that are for sale in the market. Or you can even do it yourself so that you will be sure your child will be safe from any harm.

Keep the same bedtime routine

–    Practicing a healthy sleep routine can also make it easier for your child to sleep in their new bed. Also, telling bedtime stories about a similar situation and relating it to them can help. It is a challenge for a parent to transfer their kids from their old bed to a new one. But doing it slowly and step-by-step will make it easier.

Keep the electronics away

If you want your kid to have a good night sleep, train them to live a life without a gadget. Any kind of a gadget can ruin your child’s health. Even his or her sleeping patterns. A gadget contains blue light which is responsible for keeping your brain active. And it will be difficult for you to fall asleep.

How much more for children where they need more sleep because they are growing. If you can’t help it and allow your child to use a gadget, set some limitations. They are only allowed to be exposed and use any types of gadgets for a short period of time. This can help them have a healthy sleep and a healthy body as they grow up.

Ensure them that they are safe and you love them

Not all kids are excited when the transfer to their new room. But one thing you can do is to talk to them and make sure that they feel safe and loved. You don’t have to push them to transfer. But you can slowly encourage them until they are ready to sleep in their new room and in their new bed.

And if there is a new baby on the way, ensure that you still love them. Let them understand why they need to transfer and at the same time show them how much you love them.

Let them do the first move

Once you have finally gained their trust, let them do the first move in transferring to their new sleeping area. And don’t leave them until they are already comfortable and tucked in. Tell them a bedtime story and wait for them to fall asleep so that they will still feel like you are sleeping right next to them.

Be patient

Allow your child to adjust to his or her new place. And don’t force them if they don’t want to. Once they are ready, it is time for you to slowly introduce what is going to happen as soon as they are already in their room. Patience is the key to a successful transition. Moving from one place to another can make them feel weird and frightened.

That is why you need to take it slow. Kids can be easily fooled, but once they are frightened of something, it is going to be hard. Stay right next to them and let them feel the comfort. If they don’t like the way it feels, they can always try next time.

A study shows that a child needs to have a good quality sleep. Even as adults we still need a certain number of hours to sleep so that we will be productive. It the case of our children their system is still growing. And one way for it to grow safely is for them to have a good quality sleep. According to sleepfoundation.org, the circadian rhythm of a child is underdeveloped when they are still from 0-6 months old.

Circadian rhythm is responsible for the sleep-wake cycle. And once it is developed, it needs to have the right routine to follow so that they will be able to have a healthy sleeping pattern. There are ways in order for your child to get a good night sleep. You can train them the bedtime routine so that once they are already sleeping in their own room; it will be easier for them to fall asleep.

Reference articles:

  • https://www.overstock.com/guides/how-to-choose-mattresses-for-children
  • https://www.time4sleep.co.uk/advice/choosing-mattress-children
  • https://www.tuck.com/best-mattresses-kids/
  • https://www.kidspot.com.au/parenting/child/child-sleep/how-to-choose-the-right-bed-for-growing-kids/news-story/59f4281c179eb4136824adff809301c3
  • https://www.amerisleep.com/blog/health-effects-old-mattresses/
  • https://www.sleephelp.org/best-mattresses-for-kids/
  • https://www.webmd.com/children/features/good-sound-sleep-for-children#1
  • https://mattresshelp.org/children-sleep/
  • https://www.icanteachmychild.com/7-tips-for-transitioning-to-a-big-kid-bed/
  • https://www.whattoexpect.com/toddler/crib-to-toddler-bed
  • https://raisingchildren.net.au/toddlers/sleep/where-your-child-sleeps/cot-to-bed
  • https://www.huffpost.com/entry/10-ways-you-can-make-your-mattress-last-longer_b_7897748
  • http://www.amerisleep.com/blog/make-mattress-last-longer/
  • https://www.sleepfoundation.org/sleep-topics/children-and-sleep
  • https://www.parents.com/health/healthy-happy-kids/the-7-reasons-your-kid-needs-sleep/

Written by: Dr. Jenny Carter

Dr. Carter is a pediatrician and at the same time, a child psychiatrist. She’s been working with different child-related problems, from being too clingy to a violent one. Also, she is an on call therapist for those children who needed help. She also wrote for Parents.com and RaisingChildren.net.au.

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