Play yards are bought to provide a safe and comfortable space for kids to play and sleep while their parents take a break from babysitting. These safe zone for kids can turn out to be dangerous if adequate precautions are not taken while buying and using them. Although new federal safety laws are now in place, safety measures for play yards were voluntary till 2013 resulting in several injuries. click here to know more about the safety rules that have now been made mandatory.
Here, we are giving a brief overview of the safety guidelines that are to be considered while you put your baby in a play yard unattended. We have taken helpful inputs from blogs.babycentre.com to put together these tips that can save your child from harm while in a play yard. If you are planning to get a play yard, then do keep these suggestions in mind.
It is important to go for a play yard whose mesh holes are smaller than one-quarter of an inch. It is always safer not to use sheets on the play yard mattress unless it is a tightly fitted one meant to be used along with the floor pad. Your child could suffocate under soft beddings like sheets and blankets. It is also advisable to avoid using stuffed toys and pillows in the play yard for the same reason.
Always read the safety instruction that is given in the user manual and on the play yard. Ensure that you have set up the play yard according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Double check on the latches and hinges and make sure that the top rails, as well as the center floor, are in a locked position. The floor pad should also be placed correctly. Never use the play yard with its sides down. Always check for damages in the mesh or on the railings. Don’t attempt to mend any tear on the mesh with tapes as it can pose a potential choking hazard to your kid.
Have a changing station and bassinet in your play yard only if you find it absolutely necessary. If you do have them, make sure that they are flipped to the outside while your child is playing in the play yard. Also, be aware that other kids can come and flip it right back into the play yard causing injuries to your kid. The safety straps of the changing station can also pose a strangulation hazard to the children. Make sure they are not seen hanging under the changing table. While using a bassinet, put your baby to sleep on his/her back to avoid suffocation. You need to stop using the bassinet and changing station when your baby has reached the weight recommended by the manufacturer.
Remove the mobiles and detachable toys when your child can reach them and pull them down to avoid the risk of strangulation. Always keep an eye on your child even f they are secure inside their play yard.
Keep in mind these simple safety measures and enjoy your kid-free time!