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Crib Safety: “If You Can ‘Can’ It, Ban It”

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A summertime tradition, garage and yard sales are here once again. And while you can find some great bargains and interesting new finds, you should keep some safety tips in mind if you are hunting for a crib.

 

Eric A Yancy, MD 2.8.12“Many families have vintage cribs from relatives or neighbors that have been passed down from older children and previous generations. If these cribs were built before 2011, it is likely they aren’t up to today’s crib standards,” said MHS Chief Medical Officer Dr. Eric A. Yancy. “Today’s standards don’t allow for the crib slats to be more than six centimeters apart.”

 

Dr. Yancy said a good way to measure this is with a soda can. If the can passes through the crib slats, it’s probably not a safe crib, meaning the slats are further apart than allowed. “Slats that are far apart may lead to infant entrapment and strangulation. If you can ‘can’ it, ban it.”

 

Also, drop-side cribs, while convenient, are also unsafe. Faulty mechanisms have allowed the drop sides to cause strangulation deaths. They are no longer considered safe and shouldn’t be used. Headboard “cut-outs” on a crib are also not recommended because of the safety issue of entrapment.

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Dr. Yancy has some additional tips for crib safety:

  • There should be no pillows or toys in the crib, which could cause suffocation.
  • The mattress should be relatively firm. The baby shouldn’t be able to sink into the coverings.
  • Keep a monitor near the crib at all times.
  • Remove knobs or attachable toys from the crib to prevent the baby’s clothing from getting caught, which could cause choking.
  • Keep the crib away from windows.
  • Lower the crib mattress as the baby changes stages, from rolling to pulling up to standing, to prevent falls from the crib.

 

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Managed Health Services (MHS) is a Coles client. The Coles team helped spread the word … check out some interviews we helped coordinate that Dr. Yancy did with Indianapolis-area media about crib safety:

“Garage sale crib bargain may pose safety threat” (WISH-TV, Channel 8)

Video: Crib Safety (WISH-TV, Channel 8)

“In the market for a crib? Beware if shopping used!” (WXIN-TV, FOX 59)

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