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After 21 hours of research evaluating 31 products, we picked Sealy Soybean Foam-Core Crib Mattress as the Best Overall Crib Mattress.

For a lot of parents-to-be, the excitement of a new addition begins when they’ve picked out the crib and set it up in baby’s bedroom.

Yes, the crib you choose matters – and the safety features will play a bigger role as your child begins to move on her own. But, the crib mattress your baby sleeps on is actually a little more important during the first few months of life than many people realize.

Preventing SIDS:

The right crib mattress is vitally important. It’s part of the fight against Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

Along with the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) recent recommendation to avoid crib bumpers if at all possible, there are recommendations for the mattress itself. It should be firm, covered tightly with a sheet, and you should avoid all soft toys and furnishings during sleep time. Chat with your pediatrician or check here for more tips on preventing SIDS.

When it comes to the crib mattress, you’ll also want to look for water barriers which also protect against molds and other nasties. You also need a mattress that meets or exceeds current fire safety standards without the addition of harmful chemicals.

Baby mattresses can be foam or a combination of innerspring and foam. Both are considered safe for infants and toddlers. And, the best mattresses offer two different levels of firmness (one on either side – with the firmer side for newborns).

Choosing a Crib Mattress:

As much as it seems like an added expense, you really do want a new mattress for each baby at birth. Though modern standards design them to last for quite a long time, they do lose their firmness after continued use – typically allowing older children to sink into the softer sleep which can be dangerous for infants unable to roll themselves over if their airways become blocked.

For the best tips on shopping for crib mattresses, Consumer Reports has a fantastic buying guide. And, we’ve taken the guesswork out of finding the best options on the market today by compiling a list of the best crib mattresses on the web. We’ve got everything you could possibly need right here, so happy reading!