You want to give your baby the best of everything, so while you're carefully preparing every detail for your little one's arrival, be sure you don't overlook his or her crib mattress. Your new bundle of joy will be sleeping up to 18 hours a day, which means he'll be spending quite a bit of time in his crib. There are many compelling reasons to opt for an organic crib mattress in Sacramento, even though the cost may be a bit higher. Most of them are about what an organic baby mattress doesn't have, rather than what it does.
Waterproofing is pretty important in an infant's bedding, but most mattress manufacturers achieve this with plastics, or PVC. PVC is known to out-gas and release cancer causing agents. PVC waterproofing may also crack over time, allowing urine and bodily fluids to seep into the mattress and create bacteria. A true organic baby mattress from trusted companies like The Healthy Bed Store will be naturally water resistant, allowing it to resist cracking and bacteria formation without releasing potentially toxic fumes.
Lately there has been a lot of talk about paint manufacturers finding ways to remove volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from their paints as these chemicals release potentially harmful gasses. These same VOCs are used in many cheap types of glue and are often found inside crib mattresses, holding together layers of material to keep the mattress firm and help it hold its shape. Organic mattresses are free of VOCs and much safer for baby to sleep on. Keep these chemicals off of your walls and out of your baby's bed.
All crib mattresses, including organic ones, must meet strict standards for flame resistance. Unfortunately, this often means adding fire retardant chemicals which can be dangerous for infants and young children. Organic mattresses made of wool, for example, are more naturally flame retardant than other materials. The end result is that organic mattresses require much less chemical intervention to bring them up to current flame resistance standards.
New Mattress, Old Crib
While you'll want to opt for a new organic crib mattress when furnishing the nursery, consider using an older crib and furniture. Older products have had time to out-gas and release any chemicals they may have contained, making them safer for baby. New furniture may contain PVC parts or paints that still need to out-gas and may be more dangerous than hand-me-downs and flea market finds. Mattresses, however, lose firmness over time and may pick up bacteria and mold if improperly stored, so it's best to buy them new.
Ask Dr. Gina: Are Organic Mattresses Worth It?, Natural Resources Defense Council