Liz and Roo

Do I Put Bumpers In My Crib? (Updated August 2017)

You're having a baby....and there's a lot of information to read on safety in the crib. There are things you need to consider when buying crib bedding. First....bumpers? Or not?

Bumpers are extremely controversial and not recommended by the American Society of Pediatrics. There are risks inherent in bumpers that you should read about. There's great information provided by First Candle and the Society on the issue of bumper safety to help you make a decision. In 2011, Chicago became the first city in the country to ban the sale of crib bumpers. And in 2013, Maryland also banned the sale of crib bumpers with two exceptions: mesh or breathable bumpers made of thin fabric that allow air to pass through, and vertical bumpers that wrap around each individual crib rail. 

The CPSC is currently in the process of recommending how crib bumpers should be regulated. In the meantime, it recommends that "Bare is Best" — the safest way for a baby to sleep is in a crib with nothing but a tightly fitted sheet.

However, you can still buy bumpers for your baby’s crib. Why are they available if the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends not using them? The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) doesn’t agree that crib bumpers are always unsafe. In a 2015 statement, the JPMA stated, “At no time has the crib bumper been cited as the sole cause of an infant’s death.”

JPMA also expressed concern that “the removal of a bumper from a crib will also remove its benefits,” which includes reducing the risk of bumps and/or bruises from arms and legs being caught between crib slats. The JPMA concludes that if crib bumpers meet the voluntary standards for infant bedding, then it’s safe to use.

The Consumer Products and Safety Commission (CPSC) has not issued required safety guidelines for crib bumpers, and it has not stated that bumpers are unsafe. However, in its informational pages on safe infant sleep, the CPSC recommends that a bare crib is best, with nothing in it besides a flat crib sheet.

It can all be a bit confusing. We err on the side of safety and caution. Bare is best! 

So, we know that bumpers look good in the crib, make the nursery feel more cozy and finish the look of the crib bedding. The good news? There is an alternative to bumpers...The crib rail cover, also known as a rail teething cover.

Crib rail covers provide a pretty finishing touch (and can easily replace the bumper from an aesthetic standpoint) and they also serve a function of protecting baby from ingesting wood when teething and protecting the wood against teething marks. Importantly, they are raised up on the rail, allowing air flow in the crib. 

We love the look and functionality of a rail teething cover, plus the safety issues make the use of a rail cover pretty compelling! 

Take a look at the rail cover option before making your decision. You will be surprised at how pretty your nursery will look and how many design options are available through Liz and Roo. Plus, you can monogram your rail cover to personalize the nursery. 

Gray Crib Rail Cover with Monogram                     Oxford Blue Crib Rail Cover with Anchor Monogram

If you have a “convertible crib”, it likely has a solid back wood (future) headboard. If your bumper cannot be tied at every interval, meaning every tie completed, you should not put the bumpers in the crib. A bumper with a loose middle (not tied) is a risk for baby getting entangled in the bumper.

Liz and Roo baby bedding is made in the USA.  

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