Sleep is an essential part of every child’s growing routine. To stay healthy and fit, a child needs to observe regular sleep patterns every day.
According to Sleep Foundation, babies need at least 18 hours of sleep, while toddlers require 14 hours. Children between 6 – 13 years require 12 hours of sleep daily. Poor sleep patterns make children cranky and can interfere with their overall health. Of course, if your child doesn’t sleep, you don’t get to sleep too. So, the consequences affect you indirectly.
The prolonged sleep habits of your young one emphasize the importance of the right bed for them. As your toddler graduates from a cot to a bed, the range of options for a bed can be confusing. Parents tend to ask questions such as, does the child need a toddler bed or a single on? Will the mattress have an innerspring or a latex one? Should it be placed on an ensemble or a slatted base?
Read more: How to sleep train your Baby
As the world becomes more green-aware, it is not surprising to see that eco-friendly options are the recommended alternatives to traditional mattress options.
Natural Latex Mattress is Perfect for Your Kids?
Natural latex, for example, is an ideal mattress for growing children. We will be discussing the benefits later, but before then, it is important to consider the following factors when buying a bed for your child.
Factors to consider when buying a bed for your child
The following have been shared by experts on how parents can choose a suitable mattress that will best support their child’s developing body and spine.
- Your child’s weight and age
Be careful of what you pay for. A cheap bend may not necessarily be the safest option for your child. When buying a bed for your toddler, it is important to consider their weight and age. The changeover from cot to a regular bed should occur between 18 and 36 months. By this time, your toddler should be in a suitable bed, with a suitable mattress.
- Spinal support is vital
One of the most important things that matter for a sleeping child is their spine support. Both the neck and spine must be in a neutral position. This reduces stress and encourages spinal growth without obstructions. The spine of a toddler can grow up to 1.5cm at night, and this comes from filling of the intervertebral discs between the vertebrae with water. This means the mattress should be soft enough to make them comfortable, yet stable enough to prevent sinking in.
- Hygiene is important
It is required by law to treat every new bed for dust mites before selling them. However, this does not prevent them from forming in beds over time. Special mattress protectors give beds an additional moisture-barrier and anti-allergenic properties. Avoid using sprays such as Glen 20 to remove bacteria and dust mite because the risks are higher.
Now you know what to consider when bed shopping, here are some reasons why natural latex beds are best for your growing child.
The benefits of natural latex for growing children
Natural latex is one of the best alternatives to older mattresses. Latex is made from the sap of a rubber tree plant. If you decide to buy a latex bed, ensure it is 100% natural. Please avoid a mix of chemical and natural latex beds. Any latex bed approved by Global Organic Latex Standard (GOLS) is a certified 100% natural latex bed. They are also free of toxic chemicals or synthetic materials which are obtainable with synthetic materials.
Bear in mind that some children may be allergic to natural rubber or latex. The FDA does not allow a product containing latex to be labeled as “hypoallergenic”, so ensure your child is not allergic.
Read more: Top 5 Best Latex Mattress
Why more parents are opting for natural latex mattresses for their children
Extremely resilient and durable
Kids will always be kids. During playtime and sleepovers, children jump and play on the bed, including every other rough game you can think of. This usually sends the bed into early replacement. As a parent, you will be doing your wallet a huge favor by choosing a resilient option.
Natural latex is one of the most resilient materials and will continue to offer long-term comfort and support (between 10 – 25 years) as your child grows. They will outlast the strongest synthetic foam and innerspring mattresses which tend to sink and lose shape after only a few years.
Hypoallergenic and anti-microbial
Natural latex materials have a strong resistance to microbial organisms which love to hide inside mattresses. Things like mould, mildew, bedbugs, and dust mites are responsible for triggering allergies that cause children to sneeze, cough and suffer other respiratory discomforts.
Fortunately, the anti-microbial nature of natural latex prevents these organisms from hiding in the bed. Since most children suffer the dust-triggered asthmatic attack, natural latex as a bedding material prevents that from happening.
Support for bone formation and spinal growth
We mentioned earlier, that during sleep, a child’s bones and spine grow. If the bed is not suitable, it could mar the growth of their skeletal structure. Natural latex is highly recommended by chiropractors and sleep professional for its cushioning comfort and provision of natural spine alignment, as well as orthopedic support.
Naturally, a medium density is suitable for children or those who sleep on their sides, while a firm density is appropriate for bigger, adolescent children or those who sleep on their stomach or back.
Natural latex is made up of breathable, open-cell structure that encourages circulation of air in areas associated with accumulation of heat and structure. This makes is a perfect bed for people who like in tropical or warmer climate areas and are hoping to provide a cool, comfortable bed for their children to sleep in.
However, this does not mean it is not suitable for colder regions. The breathable nature of the bed allows for temperature regulation. This means is neither gets too hot nor too cold, just perfect.
Does not contain flame retardants
One of the requirements of law is that mattresses must pass flammability standards. To ensure they do so, some manufacturers treat their mattresses with extremely toxic flame-retardant chemicals like PBDE (Polybrominated diphenyl ether).
The use of PBDE has been outlawed by United Nations because it poses a health hazard. It tends to build up in the body and overtime, the components of the chemical remain in the bloodstream. Eventually, it can cause health problems such as thyroid conditions, reproductive damage and increased chances of cancer. Natural latex mattresses neither fail the flame retardant standards nor contain PBDE.
Does not contain metal springs
Mattresses often contain either coils or springs to give the right support for the back. The right quantity of coils or spring indicates the quality of the mattress. While they have their benefits, there is an argument that states metal coil-springs cause electro-magnetic radiation. Therefore, they act as an antenna for inward radio frequencies from mobile devices, smart phones, and other wireless devices.
Natural latex beds have no need for coils or springs because they already have the right resilience and durability. Although the coil-spring argument is ongoing, owners of latex beds need not worry because of either way, they are just as safe.
Absence of synthetic foams
There is usually a layer of synthetic foam such as polyester, gel or polyurethane which is petroleum-based. This means they are made from crude, which can be harmful to your child’s health. Over time, the synthetic foams can release toxic chemicals, a process referred to as off-gassing. If the chemicals are inhaled by your children during sleep, it can build up and lead to dangerous consequences later.
Therefore, it is essential to buy 100% natural latex. Otherwise, the petroleum side of the synthetic-latex mix is subject to off-gassing which is equally harmful your child’s well-being.
They are Bounce-safe
One of the common accidents in the bedroom is caused by bouncy beds. Children love to skip and jump on their beds- they treat it as a trampoline. Beds that have a bounce factor are dangerous because they can toss a child in the direction of harm.
Natural latex beds have a low bounce factors and as such, don’t hurl your child into the air and in the path of danger. It may be “no fun” to them, but at least they are safer for it.
Eco-friendly and sustainable bed
We are advancing towards a more sustainable culture where our lifestyle and purchase habits are determined by the safety of a product to the environment. Natural latex is a renewable resource and obtained organically from a rubber tree.
You won’t only be helping your child sleep better at night, but providing a safe planet for their children and their children’s children.
Low-profile is easy to climb out of
Finally, the low-profile nature of the bed makes it easy to climb out of. This prevents potential injury when trying to get in or out of bed. It also makes the bed comfortable to sit on without hurting your child’s thighs.
Most conventional beds often need to be changed after 8 -10 years. Your natural latex bed can last a bit longer than that. Does your child need a new bed? Consider buying a natural latex mattress; the benefits can be rewarding.