My son's cot has a 2cm gap each side of the mattress (between the mattress and frame). I undersand this meets the minimum safety requirements but it seems quite large to me and I am nervous that as he is an active sleeper his hand could become trapped. I also have to make sure each sleep that it is exactly centred or the gap will be larger. Someone has told me to place a rolled up towel in the gap but I don't think that would be recommended as a safe option. What is recommended in this situation?
In regards to your enquiry regarding mattress sizing and safety, you are correct in stating that this is the maximum allowable gap as recommended. Red Nose recommends making sure there is no more than a 2cm gap between the mattress and the cot sides and ends. The gaps may be large enough to fit fingers through, but these are considered minor injuries. Larger gaps may cause face entrapment leading to increased suffocation risks, and the gaps being smaller or negligent mean the mattress may be tight, causing possible buckling and compromising the child’s flat back sleep space. We would definitely recommend against the use of soft padded items such as towels being used, as these create other suffocation and overheating risks present in the child’s sleeping environment.