Are bassinets safe for babies? | Bassinets Safety Tips

Last Updated on January 23, 2023 by Ines

Baby’s safety comes first! That’s why we’ve researched everything about bassinet safety in detail. Is using a bassinet safe for your baby? Read and consider up-to-date safety tips and rules about bassinet safety!

Baby Bassinet

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Baby Bassinet Buying Guide

Bassinet Safety

Baby bassinets are the ideal and most comfortable way to keep your little one close. While a crib can be bulky and difficult to move, a bassinet is smaller, lighter, and easier to handle. But are bassinets safe for babies to sleep in during the night?

Yes, bassinets are generally safe for newborns and young babies to sleep in at night, but only as long as they reach all safety requirements and are correctly used.

Baby Bassinet Safety Standards

The government began regulating bassinet safety in 2014 when the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) finally established safety standards for bassinets and cradles.

Current Bassinet Safety Standards:

Safety standards include requirements for bassinets’ stability, structural integrity, and warning labels to prevent injury and death by using them.

Key requirements of the CPSC’s safety standards for bassinets and cradles:

  1. Stability: Bassinets and cradles must be stable and not tip over easily.
  2. Structural Integrity: Bassinets and cradles must support a child’s weight without collapsing or breaking.
  3. Warning Labels: Bassinets and cradles must include warning labels with information about safe use and potential hazards.

It’s important to ensure that the bassinet you are using meets these safety standards and has not been recalled! I have written more about the bassinet’s recall below.

Bassinet Safety Tips and Rules

A bassinet that meets all required safety standards is a big step toward ensuring your baby’s safety. However, it is far from everything you can do to keep your baby safe when sleeping.

To ensure your bassinet safety, it is also essential to use it correctly and follow safe sleep guidelines recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Only then have you done everything you can to provide your baby with a safe sleeping environment!

Tips for using a bassinet safely:

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for assembly and use.
  • Make sure your bassinet stands on a flat and stable surface.
  • Keep the bassinet away from loose cords or other items that could pose a strangulation hazard.
  • Use only a firm, flat, tight-fitting mattress. The new bassinet should come with an appropriate one! Please only buy a bassinet with a mattress, as it can be hard to find a fitted one! 

AAP safe baby sleep recommendations relating to bassinets:

  • You should always lay your baby on her back to sleep.
  • Keep the bassinet free from toys, stuffed animals, and other objects.
  • Don’t add any additional padding, blankets, and bumper pads to the bassinet.
  • Share a bedroom with your baby, but do not share a bed. Place the baby’s bassinet in your room close to your bed.
  • Do not allow anyone to smoke near the bassinet.
  • Think about using a pacifier at naptime and bedtime.
  • Avoid overheating, and dress your baby in light-sleep clothing.
  • Do not use home monitors or commercial devices that are said to lower the risk of SIDS as a substitute for following the safe sleep recommendations.

What to do if you have an older baby bassinet?

Those using older bassinets should be aware that the federal bassinet safety standards only went into effect in 2014. Meaning bassinets manufactured before 2014 have not been regulated by any specific bassinet safety standards, so they should do further research about their bassinet safety!

If you have an older baby bassinet, even if its date of manufacture is after 2014, when new safety standards came into force, make sure it is still safe to use.

Consider the following suggestions to ensure the safety of an older bassinet:

  1. Look for labels such as JPMA or ASTM. These two groups voluntarily participated in safety standards before bassinet safety guidelines were mandated.
  2. Check the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) website or contact the manufacturer to see if the bassinet has been recalled. If it has, follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer or the CPSC to address the recall.
  3. Inspect the bassinet for any damage or wear. Look for loose or broken parts, cracks in the frame, or other signs of wear. If you find any damage, do not use the bassinet.
  4. Follow the manufacturer’s use instructions to ensure the previous owner assembled it correctly.
  5. Check the overall bassinet’s stability.
  6. Do not use the bassinet with overly puffed sides.
  7. Check the condition of the mattress. It has to be firm, flat, and without any tears or damage.
  8. Follow other bassinet safety tips described below.

What to do if your bassinet has been recalled?

If you find your bassinet on the recall list, it has a safety defect or violation that could potentially cause harm to your baby. 

You must stop using it immediately and follow the manufacturer’s or the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) instructions to address the recall.

Consider the following suggestions to ensure the safety of an older bassinet if your bassinet has been recalled:

  1. Check the CPSC website or contact the manufacturer for more information about the recall and further guidance.
  2. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer or the CPSC. If the recall concerns a relatively new bassinet, this may include returning the bassinet for a refund or repair.
  3. It’s important to take recalls seriously and follow the provided instructions to ensure your and your baby’s safety! If you question your bassinet safety, it’s always a good idea to err on the side of caution and stop using it until you can get more information.

Other frequently asked questions about the bassinet’s safety

Can you put a baby bassinet on your bed?

It is generally not recommended to place a baby bassinet on your bed!

The American Academy of Pediatrics advises against bed-sharing or placing an infant in an adult bed due to the risk of accidental suffocation or strangulation. 

Suppose you use a bassinet explicitly designed for use in an adult bed. In that case, it is essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and ensure that the bassinet is on a flat, stable surface.

Are bassinets without mesh sides safe?

Bassinets without mesh sides can be safe for infants if used correctly and meet safety standards.

Can a baby sleep in a bassinet overnight?

Yes, it is generally safe for a baby to sleep in a bassinet overnight. Bassinets are designed for infants to sleep in and can be a good option for the first few months of a baby’s life.

How long can a baby sleep in a bassinet safely?

Baby bassinets can be used only for the first months of an infant’s life. You can read more about this topic in the next part of this Baby Bassinet Guide.

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