A toddler mattress is the same size as the crib mattress your child probably used in babyhood, although now it may go in a low-to-the-ground toddler bed rather than in a baby crib. You can take the mattress out of your crib when you pack that piece of outgrown furniture away, or, if you intend to use the crib for another baby, you can buy a brand new mattress for your child’s new toddler bed.
If you’re buying your toddler a new mattress, what do you need to be looking at? Firmness isn’t as important for a mattress as it was in the mattress your newborn slept on: your child has enough mobility that he shouldn’t be under any danger of drowning in his bed. At the same time, since your toddler has slept on a firm mattress ever since he was born, something similar to his crib mattress will probably be most comfortable for him.
If your toddler bed has moderate to low-sized rails, you’ll want to make sure that your mattress is low enough that your toddler will still get all the benefit out of them. A tall mattress may mean your toddler sleeps almost level with the top of the rail, and also brings him far enough up from the ground that rolling off at night brings loud tears and perhaps a bump on the head. A low mattress not only lets you take advantage of the bedrails but, if your toddler should somehow find his way to the opening and fall off at night, also means that he has practically no distance to fall.
Do you want your child to sleep on organic? There is a debate going on about the danger of chemicals in mattresses; chemicals which may leach out into the air from your child’s bed. Nothing conclusive has been determined, so don’t feel like a bad parent if you decide to go with a cheaper, standard mattress; but some parents are choosing to buy bedding that is certified free of all toxic chemical materials.
A last point to think about when buying a mattress for your child is accident-protection features. Diapers leak, and when your toddler begins potty training there are likely to be some wet nights. Sheets and blankets can be washed, but mattresses are not made to be laundered and need protection instead. Some mattresses come with a waterproof side; a special slick cover already built in. If the mattress you select doesn’t have that, you may want to buy a waterproof cover that fits snugly over your mattress, just under the fitted sheet.
You can buy toddler mattresses online in a marketplace like Amazon.com; just read the reviews to make sure that what you are buying is a quality piece. Some mattresses that come highly recommended include:
• Safety First Heavenly Dreams White Crib Mattress, a nice 5.5 inch thick toddler mattress with the firmness your child has grown, since his earliest days, to associate with safety and sleep.
• My First Mattress Memory Foam Crib Mattress with Waterproof Cover; a firm 5 inch thick memory foam mattress that is waterproof and includes a soft cover that can be removed and washed if needed.
• Colgate Eco Classica III Dual firmness Eco-Friendlier Crib mattress, Organic Cotton Cover; a partially organic mattress with boasts eco-friendly production and has both a firm side and a softer side that can be alternated.
May your toddler sleep well and soundly on whatever mattress you choose to buy him!