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Preparing for Your Baby's Safety

There is a lot to do to get ready for the arrival of a new baby. Being well-prepared 2-3 months before the baby is born will help calm nervous feelings and make the arrival more enjoyable. Here are tips to help ensure baby’s safety in places where she will spend her most time.


  • Never place a crib near a window with mini-blind or curtain cords, or near baby monitor cords; babies can strangle on cords.
  • The crib meets the current Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Standards.
  • The crib should have a firm mattress that fits close to crib sides.
  • The crib should never have bumper pads, pillows, toys, or loose blankets.
  • The top of the crib rail in its highest position should be at least 26 inches from the top of the mattress support in its lowest position.
  • The distance between the crib bars or slats should be no more than 2 3/8 inches (about the width of a can of soda), and none of the bars should be cracked or missing. 
  • Corner posts should be flush with the end panels.  
  • In a safe crib, the hardware – bolts, screws, etc., should be firmly secured, with no sharp edges, rough areas or spots that can pinch or otherwise injure baby.

Bassinet/cradle/Pack ‘n Play/portable crib

  • Should follow the safety standards of the CPSC.
  • Should have firm, thin mattress with no space between the mattress and the sides of the bassinet, cradle, etc.
  • Sides should be high enough so baby cannot fall out.
  • If it has netting, be sure it is tightly woven.
  • Bassinet should be stable and not able to knock over.
  • Use a cradle that cannot swing high enough to overturn.

Change and Dress Baby

  • Change or dress baby on table, crib or floor.
  • Be sure surface is firm and uncluttered.
  • Be sure surface is stable and non-slippery.

Bathing Baby

  • Bathe baby in baby tub, tub placed in big tub or regular bathtub.
  • Be sure surface is non-slippery.
  • Set water heater no hotter than 120°.
  • Don’t use baby bath seat because it can tip over easily.

Playpen/Pack' n Play

  • If it has slats, be sure they are no wider than 2 3/8 inches apart.
  • If it has netting, be sure it is tightly woven.
  • Be sure the sides are sturdy and cannot collapse.
  • Have a firm cushion with no bumper pads. 

Infant Car Seat

  • Use seat approved by NHTSA’s Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 213, which specifies performance standards for car seats and booster seats used in motor vehicles. All car seats will have labeling that says: “This restraint system conforms to all applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards."
  • Know the history of a used car seat. Make sure it has never been in a crash
  • Check to be sure the car seat is not expired and/or recalled.
  • Install rear-facing in the back seat of the vehicle at a 45-degree angle. 
  • Check directions carefully to install correctly or have help installing seat by a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician.

Safety - Environment

  • Store medicines, medical marijuana, and alcohol in cabinets or locked boxes where children cannot reach.
  • Do not smoke or vape in the home or car. If someone has been smoking have them change clothing before being around baby. Make a no-smoking or vaping in the house rule.
  • Rest and eat a healthy diet.
  • Maintain strength for delivery and when baby comes home.
  • Keep floors and stairs clear and in good condition.
  • Maintain home temperature at around 70 degrees.
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